Thamesmead man jailed for murder of his teenage girlfriend
PUBLISHED: 17:34 12 August 2019
A man who killed his teenage girlfriend has been jailed for a minimum of 17 years.
Scott Clifford, 33, was sentenced on Monday, August 12 at Southwark Crown Court, for the murder of 18-year-old Natasha Hill.
Clifford, of Sewell Road, Thamesmead, was found guilty last week of Natasha's murder and a further two counts of actual bodily harm and one of common assault relating to incidents prior.
After the sentencing, Det Sgt Andy Sheppard, from Specialist Crime, said: "Clifford has received a strong and appropriate punishment for the vicious actions that resulted in the loss of a young woman's life.
"Throughout the trial and investigation, Clifford has continually lied to officers and the jury about the death of Miss Hill, regularly claiming that her injuries were self-inflicted. Multiple strands of evidence were proven to contradict his made-up story; his abusive and violent ways have now been exposed.
"The pain her family has endured and has been exacerbated by his refusal to take responsibility for his actions that night. I can only hope that his sentencing provides some kind of peace to them.
"The court heard that the couple had a volatile relationship during their time together. I would encourage anyone who is a victim of domestic abuse to seek help from either the police or any one of a number of charities that offer support."
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Officers and the London Ambulance Service were called to Sewell Road on April 15 last year.
Clifford claimed Natasha had fallen down the stairs after feeling ill, following a day of drinking.
Clifford said she had thrown up multiple times before going upstairs to bed; after she allegedly fell, Clifford claimed to have carried her back up and put her to bed. He told police that she had no obvious injuries.
He then stated that he woke up and noticed Natasha was bleeding and had black eyes that were not there when he put her to bed. He called police and relayed this information to the call operator, adding that she was unresponsive.
Paramedics pronounced Natasha dead at 4.31am, less than 10 minutes after Clifford made the call.
A post-mortem examination gave cause of death as a major head injury.
Detectives who investigated the case said they found a multitude of evidence at the scene which contradicted Clifford's claims.