Vicious circles

26th January 2007 at 00:00
Natalie Connor's obsessive hatred of a classmate resulted in arson and murder - and an 11-year jail sentence.

The 18-year-old bullied Lucy Cochrane, a pupil at Newall Green High School in Manchester, for more than 18 months because of an apparent slight.

Her campaign of "escalating unpleasantness" took on fatal proportions when she convinced her parents to pour petrol through the letterbox of Lucy's family home, and set light to it. Lucy, who has learning difficulties, suffered horrendous burns in the fire that killed her parents.

Connor was jailed for manslaughter in December, while her parents received life imprisonment for double murder. Lucy is being cared for by her uncle in London, where she now attends college.

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