Alesha MacPhail killer attended discussion on child abduction just three years before he raped and murdered six-year-old
In July 2018, Aaron Campbell abducted, raped and murdered Alesha just days after she arrived on the Isle of Bute to spend the summer with her family
The teenager who raped and murdered six-year-old Alesha MacPhail reportedly attended a school assembly on child abduction just three years before the incident.
Aaron Campbell was part of a class that attended a talk discussing the impact the loss of a child can have on parents and families, The Daily Record reports.
Three years after attending the discussion, Campbell abducted Alesha from her bed just a couple of days after she arrived on the Isle of Bute last July to spend the summer with her family. He raped and murdered her, and then left her body on a patch of wasteland.
Sandra Brown, the founder of charity Moira Anderson Foundation, spoke of her horror when she found out Campbell was in the audience when she spoke to students on Bute.
"I was shocked last year when I discovered that in the hall that day was Aaron Campbell, who would only have been around 13," she told The Daily Record. "How anyone so young could hear about the heartbreak sexual predators can cause and the devastation for families left without their child then go out and do what he did is utterly incomprehensible."
The Moira Anderson Foundation helps families affected by child sexual abuse and was founded after the disappearance of schoolgirl Moira in 1957 left her north Lanarkshire community in a state of shock.
Brown opened up to an assembly of students at Rothesay Academy on the Isle of Bute in 2015 speaking about how her community was scarred after Moira's disappearance.
"I wanted to ensure all the children present heard about the services we provide and I also described to them the dreadful impact on a community when a child disappears," she explained. "Moira's parents, I told them, were the ones who served the life sentence and not my father who was responsible for her abduction, and, I believe, her murder."
"I can still feel the shocked silence in that hall. But it was my turn to be shocked when I learned that Campbell had been there," Brown added.
The Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh cut Campbell's 27-year minimum term to 24 years in September saying it was "excessive" for his age.
That said, Campbell was only 16 when he carried out the gruesome crime.