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Murdered schoolgirl Paige Doherty’s father, 37, ‘dies of broken heart’

Paige Doherty was 15 years old when she was murdered in Clydebank, Dunbartonshire

The father of murdered schoolgirl Paige Doherty has died, it emerged last night.

Jon Bothwell, 37, was found ill at his home in Cambuslang, Lanarkshire, on Saturday night and later died at Hairmyres Hospital in East Kilbride.

He had struggled to come to terms with his daughter’s murder, it was claimed.

Mr Bothwell’s mother, Roseanne Bothwell, 71, told the Daily Record her son had ‘died of a broken heart’. 

Police Scotland said there appeared to be no suspicious circumstances surrounding Mr Bothwell’s death.

Ms Bothwell told the newspaper: ‘He was heartbroken. Paige loved Jon out her mind too. He never got over it. He died of a broken heart. He was never the same after she died.

‘He said he used to have nightmares where he’d see her at the bottom of his bed and she wanted him to go with her. We’ll never get over Paige’s death and Jon took it the worst. He died in the bedroom but they brought him back.

‘The paramedics then took him to hospital. He was in a coma. He died there on Saturday.’

Paige was 15 years old when she was murdered by John Leathem, 34, in the Delicious Deli sandwich shop in Clydebank, Dunbartonshire, in 2016. 

Paige's father Jon Bothwell (pictured), 37, was found ill at his home and later died in hospital

Paige’s father Jon Bothwell (pictured), 37, was found ill at his home and later died in hospital

A police officer stands at a cordon in Clydebank in March 2016 where Paige was last seen

A police officer stands at a cordon in Clydebank in March 2016 where Paige was last seen

The married father-of-two stabbed her 61 times and inflicted more than 140 injuries before storing her body in a shed at his home, then dumping her remains in bushes.

Mr Bothwell was said to have been hurt at being isolated from Paige at the time of her funeral, arranged by her mother Pamela Munro and stepfather Andy Munro.

Mr Bothwell and Mrs Munro split when Paige was two – and, last July, Mrs Munro had a girl whom she named her Penny Margaret Paige after her murdered daughter.

Leathem admitted to murdering the teenager but later saw his jail term reduced from 27 to 23 years after an appeal. 

Paige's coffin is carried out of St Margaret's Church in Clydebank after her funeral in April 2016

Paige’s coffin is carried out of St Margaret’s Church in Clydebank after her funeral in April 2016

In February 2017, speaking after the appeal, Paige’s mother, Pamela Munro, 33, vowed to campaign for changes to the justice system in her daughter’s name.  

She told STV: ‘How can somebody justify killing a child as brutally as he killed Paige and say, ‘It’s not as bad as this, or as bad as that so we’re going to reduce it?’

‘They add in that (Leathem is) a family man and he’s never offended before. That just makes it worse. It shows how unpredictable he really is – so make an example of him. 

‘I think they need to set a minimum punishment part when it comes to excessive killing, such as child killers. I think it needs to be a minimum of 35 years.’ 

John Leathem, 34, admitted to murdering Paige

Paige was murdered in Scotland aged 15

John Leathem (left), 34, admitted to murdering Paige (right) but later saw his jail term reduced

‘In our eyes, nothing is ever going to be high enough for taking our wee girl’s life.’  

The decision prompted Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson to call for whole-life sentences to be introduced north of the border.

SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon said at the time: ‘I met Paige’s mother (in 2016) and there literally are no words to express the pain and grief she and the rest of her family have gone through.

‘As well as being first minister, I’m also a human being and there are many occasions when I look at decisions of courts and wish that different decisions had been reached. It may well be this is one such case.’ 

When Leatham was initially led away to start his life sentence, there were shouts of ‘scum’, ‘monster’ and ‘rot in hell’ from Paige’s family and friends in the courtroom.

Paige's mother Pamela Munro (centre) with her husband Andy Munro (left) in October 2016

Paige’s mother Pamela Munro (centre) with her husband Andy Munro (left) in October 2016

Jailing the killer at the High Court in Glasgow in October 2016, Judge Lady Rae said it was a ‘savage and frenzied’ attack, and also described the killing as ‘truly reprehensible and impossible to comprehend’.

Paige was repeatedly knifed just minutes after going into Leathem’s shop to buy breakfast in March 2016. She had 43 wounds to her head in the frenzied attack and a fatal wound to her neck.

Two days later the schoolgirl’s body was found dumped in woods. 

At an earlier hearing, married father-of-two Leathem – who had pleaded guilty to murder – told the court he ‘over-reacted’ when Paige had allegedly threatened to report him for a sexual offence if he did not give her a job.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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