‘You just can’t explain the heartache' - family of Melissa Liddle

Melissa and her brother Liam
Melissa and her brother Liam

The devastated family of Melissa Liddle have told of their shock and anger after hearing how her body was left for her brother to find.

The tragedy has brought months of anguish for the 23-year-old’s mum Tracey Keighley and stepdad David as they prepared for the day they would finally see Anthony Ross – the man who robbed them of their “precious” and “beautiful” daughter – locked away.

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Family of killer partner left Melissa Liddle’s family to discover her body

The couple, along with Melissa’s sister Demi, her grandparents and other family members and friends, were at Newcastle Crown Court, yesterday, to see Ross made the subject of an indefinite hospital order.

During the sentencing hearing, it was revealed Ross’s uncle and father had discovered Melissa lying dead but no emergency services were called.

Instead they arranged for the killer to have an appointment with a solicitor.

Emergency services were called after her body was found later by her younger brother Liam Bush and her stepdad.

After the hearing Mrs Keighley, wearing a necklace with a picture of her daughter, said: “It didn’t matter what the sentence was, we were never going to be happy.

“It isn’t going to change a thing and won’t bring Melissa or Liam back.

“He robbed Melissa of her life and two beautiful boys of a loving and devoted mother. How could anyone just leave her lying there?

“We know it wouldn’t have changed the outcome for Melissa, but it would have stopped Liam from finding his sister the way he did. He might still be here with us now.”

She added: “It’s not just Melissa we have lost. It’s Liam too. You just can’t explain the heartache that has been caused to our family.

“Her two boys. Lewis, is older so has some memories of his mam, but Ollie – he doesn’t have any. He will never know how much his mam loved and worshipped him. How do you deal with that?

“We have been back and forwards to court for months but on Monday night, it was the first time it hit me that I was going to get closure.

“For the first time, I really started to struggle with my emotions. You start thinking about what must have been going through Melissa’s mind and Liam.

“I’ve never really had the chance to come to terms with Melissa’s death, I still picture her walking across the grass and coming in through the front door and I picture Liam coming through the back door with a big smile on his face.

“I keep believing that. Right now it is helping me to keep me going.”