In a letter to his father, murder accused Stuart Hazell said he had made ‘one mistake and my whole world has collapsed’
The man on trial accused of murdering Tia Sharp searched the internet looking for pornographic pictures of young girls, a court has heard.
Searches including the terms “naked little girlies”, “illegal under-age incest pics” and “schoolgirl abuse” were found on the web browser of Stuart Hazell’s phone, jurors at the Old Bailey were told.
Prosecutors claim Hazell, 37, sexually assaulted 12-year-old Tia, the grand-daughter of his then-partner Christine Bicknell, then killed her and hid her body in the loft of the house the couple shared in south London.
Earlier, the court heard the window cleaner wrote to his father Keith Hazell from prison, insisting Tia’s death had been an accident, and he had hidden her body after he panicked. He denied any sexual motive for his actions, saying: “They’re trying to say it was sexual but I promise you it wasn’t.”
But junior prosecutor Jocelyn Ledward told the jury that a number of Googlesearches had been recovered from the web browsers on Hazell’s mobile phone. The searches included “schoolgirl nudes”, “young young girlies”, “under-age photos” and “under-age incest galleries”. There were also searches for “violent forced rape” and for “little girls in glasses”.
Ms Ledward told the court that adult and child pornography was found on a memory card hidden in the doorway of a cupboard at Hazell’s house. There were also stills and moving footage of Tia asleep, and the image of a naked girl that prosecutors claim is Tia after she died.
The jury was earlier read a letter sent by Hazell when he was in Belmarsh prison in August last year, to his father. In the letter, topped with the words “forgive me” and a sad face, Hazell said he had made “one mistake and my whole world has collapsed”.
He wrote: “What happened I will explain in time, but put it this way, it was an accident and I panicked. Stupid I know but for my stupidity I’m looking at 15 to 18 years. I regret it every second of every day and there’s nothing I can do about it. I think about taking my own life because if I don’t, someone will, that is a definite.”
The letter went on: “God I hate myself. I should have gone about this a different way, told the police everything. They’re trying to say it was sexual but I promise you it wasn’t, it was an accident and I was a prick to do what I done.”
The case, at the Old Bailey, was adjourned to Monday morning at 10.15am.