Who is Ellie Gould? Mother of murdered teenager calls for sentencing change

Ellie Gould

The mother of a murdered teenager says she “will not rest” until sentences for killers who use a weapon found at the scene are increased.

Thomas Griffiths, then 17, stabbed Ellie Gould to death with a kitchen knife in Wiltshire in 2019.

Carole Gould successfully advocated for harsher sentences for adolescent murderers, known as Ellie’s Law.

Who is Ellie Gould? Mother of murdered teenager calls for sentencing change
Ellie, 17, was a student at Hardenhuish School in Chippenham

She has now joined the Killed Women campaign, which was established to combat male violence against women.

Griffiths attacked Ellie, 17, at her family home in Calne, because he couldn’t accept she wanted to end their relationship.

He was sentenced to a minimum of 12 and a half years in prison, with his age at the time of the crime influencing the length of his sentence.

“Griffiths came into our house, he strangled Ellie, she was fighting desperately back, scratching his face and he didn’t stop,” Mrs Gould said.

“He then picked up a knife, and he stabbed her 13 times in the neck… and then just walked out of the house as if nothing had happened.

“His punishment for that was 12-and-a-half-years and I will never let it rest until we get proper justice,” she added.

Who is Ellie Gould? Mother of murdered teenager calls for sentencing change
Carole Gould said her daughter Ellie

Mrs Gould said the Killed Women campaign will be seeking tougher sentences for people who kill using a weapon they have not taken to the scene.

She said: “The law, as it stands at the moment is that if you take a knife out into the street and kill somebody, the starting point for sentencing is 25 years.

“If you pick up a knife in the home and murder somebody, the starting point for sentencing is 15 years. There is this 10-year difference.”

According to Mrs. Gould, women were mostly killed at home. She considers the disparity in sentencing rules to be “insulting” and “undermining the value of women’s lives.”

Mrs Gould will be meeting with the Ministry of Justice in the new year following a review of domestic homicide sentences.

Thomas Griffiths
Thomas Griffiths

She said she would “not accept anything less than a levelling up of these sentencings”.

“We want these punishments to fit the crime and that is where the power of Killed Women will come in,” she added.

A government spokesperson said tackling domestic homicide was a “key priority”.

They said it had invested more than £230m into a plan to tackle domestic abuse in March – which included £140m to support victims and £81m to tackle perpetrators.