The family of Megan Newborough have released the following statement:
“We simply don’t know where to begin. “We’re a large, close-knit family and our lives have been well and truly ripped apart.
“Megan shone like a star to everyone she came into contact with. She excelled at work and was an enthusiastic dancer, teaching children of all ages. She had a bright future ahead of her.
“Megan was only 23 when she was killed – she was just days away from her 24th birthday and was about to move into her own house. We’ve still got things she’d bought and items she was going to take with her, which serve as a cruel reminder.
“It’s difficult to put into words the feeling we have knowing we won’t see our daughter, sister, granddaughter and cousin prosper as a young adult.
“We’re extremely grateful for the love and support given by those closest to us, but we’re still living in a nightmare.
“Having a knock at your door in the early hours of the morning to say a loved one is dead is something nobody should ever have to deal with. At that moment, our hearts were shattered beyond repair. Again, it’s almost impossible to describe how numb you become. You’re unable to think, sleep or function properly.
“Megan’s story is our story – we’re the ones serving the life sentence.
“She was an incredibly good judge of character. She knew who she could and couldn’t trust. She left home that night in a very happy mood. The thought of what happened to her just hours later – and the evil facing her – is something we can’t escape.
“The same thoughts constantly go around in our heads – should we have known? Is there anything we could’ve done? We’re still overcome with guilt for not protecting her.
“Everything still doesn’t seem real and when we’re at home, we still expect Megan to walk through the front door. It’s an expectation we don’t think will ever leave us.”