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Caroline Glachan murder: Mum 'over the moon' with jail time for killers - as 999 call released of moment body found

A murdered schoolgirl’s mum is "over the moon" that justice has been served to two of her daughter's killers.

It comes as a 999 call has revealed that members of the public who discovered Caroline Glachan's body at first thought it may have been a dummy in the water.

The 14-year-old's body was recovered from the River Leven in West Dunbartonshire in August 1996.

It would take 27 years for her killers to be brought to justice.

On Monday at the High Court in Glasgow, Robert O'Brien, 45, and Andrew Kelly, 44, were jailed for life.

O'Brien must serve a minimum of 22 years behind bars before being eligible for parole, and Kelly 18 years.

Donna Marie Brand, 44, who was also found guilty of the teenager's murder following a trial, was unfit to attend court and will be sentenced in March.

Caroline's mum, Margaret McKeich, said: "This is the day that I've been waiting for, for 27 years.

"It was more than what I was hoping for. I'm really, really happy.

"I'm just sad that the other one is not here to get her comeuppance, but she'll get it in March.

"Today I couldn't have wished for more, the outcome, the whole thing. I am over the moon.

"It's not going to bring Caroline back but it's justice for her. I don't know if closure is the right word, but justice has certainly been done."

'I just found a body'

The Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) has released a 999 call made to emergency services after the teenager's body was discovered.

A man can be heard telling the operator that other witnesses believed they could identify the victim due to trainers discarded at the scene.

Caller: "I just found a body there. It's in the water."

Handler: "Whereabouts in the water?"

Caller: "See where St Martin's Primary School is?"

Handler: "St Martin's?"

Caller: "Yes, in Renton."

Handler: "Whereabouts is St Martin's Primary School? [Inaudible]."

Caller: "It's on the Leven, it's in the Leven."

Handler: "I know the body is in the Leven, but it's in the water near the school, is it?"

Caller: "Aye, it's right next to it, aye."

Handler: "Do you know is it a male or a female?"

Caller: "You see the young boys that's down there with me, well they think they know who it is because of the training shoes. There's a pair of training shoes lying on the grass, right, and the body is lying in the water. There was this man that was pointing to us when we were going down, and he said 'is that a body or is that a dummy?' So, I went down a wee bit and I seen the training shoes, and I was looking but it honestly looked like a dummy. But it is a body, it's definitely a person."

Handler: "Male or female?"

Caller: "Female."

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Alibis exposed as lies

The killers - who were teenagers at the time of the murder - were eventually caught after Police Scotland reinvestigated the case in 2019.

More than 200 statements were taken from people who had not previously spoken to police, and from that officers from the Major Investigations Team were able to discredit their alibis.

During the trial last year, the jury heard that Caroline met boyfriend O'Brien, Kelly and Brand at a bridge near a towpath beside the river, between Renton and Bonhill.

There, the trio shouted and swore at her and repeatedly punched and kicked her on the head and body.

The court also heard they threw bricks or "similar instruments", causing blunt force trauma to her head and body.

She was pushed or fell into undergrowth and her body was later discovered in the river at Place of Bonhill, Renton.

The court heard the ultimate cause of death was drowning.

Judge Lord Braid said: "It is hard to find words to describe the evil nature of your crime, but three which come to mind are brutal, depraved, and above all, wicked."