Teenager who murdered pensioner fails to get 12-year prison sentence shortened

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A teenage killer who left his pensioner victim to drown in mud has failed to convince a top judge he deserves a cut in his sentence.

Aiden Jackson, from Sleaford, was just 17 when he murdered 67-year David Cowley at the Ballast Pits in November 2010.

Intending to rob the Boston pensioner, Jackson pressed his face into muddy ground. He died from neck compression and suffocation.

Jackson, now 25, was convicted of murder at Lincoln Crown Court in October 2011 and ordered to serve at least 12 years behind bars.

At London’s High Court today (Thursday), he pleaded for an earlier release date, claiming his progress behind bars had been “exceptional”.

Considering the case on paper submissions, Mr Justice Lewis said there were “clear and positive signs” that Jackson had “begun to develop geater maturity in his behaviour and outlook.”

Jackson had endured a troubled childhood and the trial judge had accepted that he had not intended to kill Mr Cowley.

But, refusing to cut his minimum jail term, Mr Justice Lewis added: “There is, however, more work for Mr Jackson to do...the progress in recent years is encouraging, but it is not exceptional.”

Mr Cowley, “was homosexual and had a sexual interest in young men and, it seems, a sexual interest in Jackson,” the judge said.

“Mr Cowley texted Jackson on the evening of November 15, 2010 and the text messages indicated that Mr Cowley offered Jackson money for sexual activity.

“Jackson strung Mr Cowley along, causing him to believe, wrongly, that Jackson was prepared to engage in sexual activity.

“In fact, Mr Jackson is not homosexual and did not intend to engage in sexual activity. He intended to rob Mr Cowley.

“Jackson and Mr Cowley met at the train station. They drove to an area known as Ballast Pits.

“At some stage, Mr Cowley was brought to lie face down on the ground.

“Jackson pressed down on Mr Cowley’s neck and pushed his face into the ground for a significant period of time.”

He added: “The cause of death was a combination of neck compression and suffocation.

“Precisely what caused Jackson to attack and kill Mr Cowley has never been established.”