In 1968 the body of a 14-year-old school boy was found – he’d been sexually assaulted and strangled to death. The was no sign of his killer…until 33-years later someone confessed.
Roy Tutill was on his way home from school on 23 April 1968. The 14-year-old attended Kingston Grammar School in Kingston upon Thames. He left school at 3:30pm and got the bus with friends.
He was saving for a bicycle at the time and decided to hitchhike the rest of the way home to save on the bus fare. It was something he reportedly did quite often. But the last anyone saw of Roy was him thumbing a lift at the side of the road.
When he failed to arrive home that night, his parents phoned the police. Three days later, the schoolboy’s body was found in woodland. He’d been strangled and sexually assaulted.
The horrifying crime shook the nation, but the only information police had to go on was that the bus driver had seen Roy talking to someone in a silver car. Samples were taken from Roy’s body and clothes but they didn’t reveal much.
The case soon dried up, though it was frequently reviewed. Over the years police believed the person who’d killed Roy was a repeat offender. And in the 1970’s they interviewed a man named Brian Lunn Field from Solihull, West Midlands who’d been convicted of indecent assault charges against young boys. He denied having anything to do with Roy’s murder.
Over the years advances in technology meant in 2000, police had a hit on a DNA sample taken from Roy’s case. It matched Field’s who’d given a DNA sample for drink driving offences. Field had been living off the radar for many years, but police were able to track him down.
In early 2001, Field was arrested. He denied knowing Roy and claimed he had nothing to do with the schoolboy’s brutal end. He told police he’d put his past offences against young boys behind him and was a changed man. Overnight, police kept him in a cell. Then the following day, a breakthrough….
Field confessed to assaulting and killing Roy. He admitted seeing him hailing a lift and offered the boy a ride home. He apparently told them he drove to a layby and raped Roy before panicking and strangling him. Then he hid Roy’s body in the boot of his car for a few days, before dumping it.
In November 2001 Field, then 65, was sentenced to life in prison after he pleaded guilty to murder, but not the sexual assault. Roy’s parents didn’t live to see Roy’s killer jailed. But they can now rest in peace knowing their boy got the justice he deserved.