Milly Dowler’s 20-year-old death: Disappearance and brutal murderer, as well as family’s pain


Milly Dowler, a student at Weybridge High School, walked to her local train station on March 21st 2002.

After eating at a cafe, she started walking home. The next three minutes would be her last.

Later, a car linked to Levi Bellfield could be seen on CCTV further down street. However, Dowler was not visible.

The girl was also reported missing that day, prompting a national search for her.

The search result was filled with appeals by celebrities as well as a reconstruction of Crimewatch. After months of unsuccessful searches, Milly’s family was informed by police that their child was likely deceased.

In September that year, mushroom pickers in Hampshire found human remains, which analysis of dental records later confirmed to match those of Dowler’s.

The remains of the body were so decayed that no cause of death could be determined.

Fake calls

Milly's parents Bob and Sally Dowler were put through hell after the disappearance of their daughter
Milly’s parents Bob Dowler, and Sally Dowler, were thrown into turmoil by the disappearance their daughter.

As if the family’s pain of losing a daughter wasn’t enough, sick individuals made their torment even worse.

Dowler’s sister received letters threatening to kill her and claiming to have killed Dowler. Paul Hughes was eventually found to have sent the letters. He received five years prison time for his vicious actions. He was already in prison for assaulting a 12-year old girl at the time.

Meanwhile, a woman made the bizarre decision to repeatedly call Dowler’s suffering parents pretending to be her. She was held for five months.

Dowler’s parents also received emails from Gary Farr, who insisted she had been moved out of the country to work as a sex worker in Poland. In 2006, it was reported that Farr had been sectioned in accordance with the Mental Health Act.

Who is Levi Bellfield

Levi Bellfield denied murdering Milly Dowler until 2016
Up to 2016: Milly Dowler’s murder was not committed by Levi Bellfield

Milly’s murder was finally convicted of Levi Bellfield. He also murdered Marsha McDonnell, Amelie Deagrange and Kate Sheedy.

Two years after being identified as the prime suspect, he was charged with the crime to have killed Milly.

He was already facing three life sentences in prison for attempted murder and murder at the time of his arrest. Following the Milly trial, he received a third life sentence along with a whole-life tariff.

Bellfield confessed to killing the 13 year-old in 2016, years after denying it for years.