Christopher Halliwell kept my daughter’s skull as trophy, says victim’s mother

·2-min read
Becky Godden-Edwards’  remains were found near Eastleach
Becky Godden-Edwards’ remains were found near Eastleach

The mother of a woman strangled by killer Christopher Halliwell said parts of her body were missing when police gave her back.

Karen Edwards claimed Halliwell kept Becky Godden-Edwards’ skull, hands and feet as “trophies”.

She said mistakes in Wiltshire Police’s handling her daughter’s murder left some forensic evidence unaccounted for.

Swindon cab driver Halliwell strangled the 20-year-old in 2003 and buried her body in a field in Eastleach, Gloucestershire.

Taxi driver Christopher Halliwell was jailed for murder
Taxi driver Christopher Halliwell was jailed for murder

But her murder only came to light in 2011 when Halliwell was arrested over the disappearance of personal assistant Sian O’Callaghan, 22, who got into his taxi.

Halliwell, now 57, was found guilty of Ms Godden-Edwards’ murder in 2016 and the force released her remains the following year.

Ms Edwards, 61, said although bone fragments were returned she wants to know where the rest of her daughter is.

Halliwell murdered nightclubber Sian O'Callaghan after she got into his cab in Swindon
Halliwell murdered nightclubber Sian O'Callaghan after she got into his cab in Swindon

After speaking to a funeral director who said parts were missing, she said: “What I heard was shocking and at that point I felt sick but I knew I had to check for myself because I have lost all faith in Wiltshire Police.

“This leaves only one option - Halliwell. Has he kept these parts as trophies? We know he went back to the site several times.

“Becky should be in one grave. There’s bits of her all over the place and we don’t know where she is. It’s disgusting and utterly disgraceful behaviour.”

She added to the Swindon Advertiser: “This has been a nightmare, it’s one thing after another. My strength and determination has kept me going along with my fantastic family and support network of friends and the public, but I would hate the thought of someone else having to put up with this shocking treatment.

“I understand there are other things going on and the police are struggling with the resources they have but my daughter needs to be put to rest, I need to finalise this and get closure. I have a lot of respect for the police, many of my friends are in the police, but it’s the hierarchy that’s given me grief.”

A Wiltshire Police spokesman said: “We are aware of the concerns raised by Karen Edwards in relation to the remains of her daughter Becky Godden-Edwards.

“We are working in conjunction with the Independent Office for Police Conduct to investigate these concerns and make sure Ms Edwards is kept up to date.”

Halliwell was handed a whole life term after being convicted the second murder.

Following his sentence, police said there is a “distinct possibility” Halliwell is a serial killer highlighting the eight-year gap between the two.

In 2019, the double murders featured in ITV crime drama A Confession starring Martin Freeman alongside Imelda Staunton and Joe Absolom.

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