Teenager who murdered pregnant girlfriend wrote letter to her devastated mum saying 'LOL'

A teen who murdered his pregnant girlfriend then wrote a letter to her mum containing the phrase "lol" has been jailed for life.

Eighteen-year-old Aston Robinson will serve a minimum of 14 years in prison for strangling Kayleigh-Anne Palmer at his parents' home in Cheltenham on April 2.

Kayleigh-Anne was just 16, and dressed in her school uniform when she was attacked.

Robinson left his girlfriend, who was 24 weeks pregnant, frothing at the mouth and blue in the face, then locked the house and headed to a nearby bookmakers to check on a £20 bet.

Kayleigh-Anne, known as Kay to friends, died in hospital three days later after doctors induced the birth of her daughter, who also died.
A post-mortem examination found Kay died from brain injuries following her strangulation and 20 separate injuries were found on her body, from bruising to her cheek and arms and legs to ligature marks from one side of her neck to the other.

Robinson later admitted he had punched his girlfriend and wrapped a tartan scarf around her neck in a bid to make her "be quiet" after she asked "how would you like it if I met boys?".

While awaiting trial in prison, Robinson wrote two letters to Kay's distraught mother, Helen Bage, describing himself as "single forever me" after the death, and used the phrase "lol" - short for laugh out loud.

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In one letter he described how the pair had travelled to Birmingham together but did not have ID required to book a hotel room so "took the train home and snuck into my house lol x".

Robinson, of Humber Road, Cheltenham, was today convicted of Kay's murder following a two-week trial at Bristol Crown Court. Jurors found him not guilty of child destruction.

Robinson showed no emotion as the unanimous verdict was returned by the jury, some of whom were weeping.

Kay's mother Helen, father Dean Palmer and grandparents Carole and Michael Bage also wept following the verdict.

Judge Neil Ford QC, the Recorder of Bristol, sentenced Robinson to life and said he would spend a minimum of 14 years behind bars.

He said: "Mr Robinson became Kayleigh's boyfriend in the summer of 2013 when he was 17 and she was 15.

"She had the greatest affection for him and I am in no doubt that he valued the relationship with her but he became irrationally concerned that Kayleigh would leave him for another boy or that another boy would lure her away from him.

"He didn't have the emotional maturity to cope with that situation. He became increasingly jealous, possessive and controlling. He simply couldn't bring himself to trust in Kayleigh."

The jury was told Robinson used both hands to pull the scarf tight around Kay's neck for at least 15 to 30 seconds at around midday.

His sister Michaela arrived at their parents' home a short time later and Robinson double bolted the front door to prevent her from gaining entry before fleeing on a borrowed BMX bike.

CCTV images showed Robinson checking a £20 bet, believed to have been made on a horse, at the same time as paramedics battled to save Kay and her unborn child.

Kay was later taken to hospital but never regained consciousness and the heartbeat of her baby, named Lily-Rose, stopped the following day, on April 3.

In the first letter written from his prison cell to Kay's mother, Robinson said: "I am so sorry for your loss, my loss as well, lost a daughter as well. I've lost everything that mattered to me."

He added, in a second: "I was hoping that after I waked up and after my jail sentence I would go back into Kay's arms but God took her away in peace, away from my accusations and controlling behaviour.

"All that because I loved and adored her."

The jury heard Robinson had been abusive to Kay throughout their relationship and punched her in the stomach when she informed him she had missed a period.

"He said 'this will stop you having a baby'," Christopher Quinlan QC, prosecuting, said.

Detective Chief Inspector Mark Little, from Gloucestershire Police, said Robinson had no shown no remorse over Kay's death.

He added: "I don't think writing letters to the mother of the girl you have killed - bearing in mind he used the abbreviation 'lol' - is appropriate.

"I haven't seen any remorse. I don't know what's inside Aston Robinson's head but I would be genuinely surprised if he was thinking about Kayleigh-Anne Palmer and the impact on her family."

"Helen I can't get over the fact that Kay is gone, my Kay is gone. It's hurting me so much. I haven't slept for days, all I can think of is Kay. My mind keeps replaying the day when it happened.

I know that she loved me. She used to cry loads when we'd argue and I'd say let's have space for a while, she always used to say 'I can't Ast, I need you all the time, FOREVER, she used to say that I made her complete, and happy.

I know that she had changed since with me, but it wasn't all bad, she would always have a smile on her beautiful face when she saw me.

She trusted me with everything and I ruined it all. I just can't get my head around her lying about saying she had chucked her phone when I knew that she didn't.

I blame myself of that because I never let her say negative things about herself and she obviously needed someone to talk to.

Our 14 months together were absolute perfect, from when we first started talking we both knew we was going to be together, the way we looked at each other was just love glistening in our eyes.

Helen I am wordless for the pain I have caused to your family. Just forgive me one day would you please.

I'll always remember Kay, from when we went to Birmingham and tried to runaway, and the hotel wanted I.D. and neither had any so we got the train back and snuck into my house lol x all the sleepovers we had, the nights when we just used to lay there and stare at the stars with her in my arms, I used to pick her up in my shoulders.

She used to scream when we walked up Leckhampton Hill at night to get over her fears, she would squeeze my hand hard as she could.

Look, what I'm trying to get at is I will always love Kayleigh there's no-one out there what will ever replace her in my heart - single forever me...

I'm so sorry for the loss I didn't want that to happen - I was hoping that when she waked up and after my jail sentence, I would get back into Kay's arms, but God took her away in peace, away from my accusations and my controlling behaviour...

All that because I loved + adored her. R.I.P Snay."

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Bristol Crown Court CCTV