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Last Updated: Friday, 21 January, 2005, 15:33 GMT
Jodi the 'free spirited' teenager
Jodi Jones
Jodi was said by family to be strong-minded and caring
Jodi Jones was described as a free spirit who was a ray of sunshine to her family and friends.

The 14-year-old was typical of her age - she penned a daily diary, loved music, was independent minded and a strong willed teenager.

The youngster prided herself in standing out from the crowd and even dyed her hair pink.

But there was sadness in her life. Her father killed himself when she was just eight years old and she self-harmed.

At just 14, Jodi was having a sexual relationship with Luke Mitchell and had smoked cannabis with him.

She was clearly smitten and wrote in her diary: "I think I am actually in love with Luke. He is just so sweet."

Jodi lived with her mother Judy, 38, in the Easthouses area of Dalkeith and a had a brother Joseph, 21, and sister Janine, 18.

'Typical teenager'

The family was shattered when almost eight years ago Jodi's father Jimmy committed suicide at 39.

When Jodi, who was affectionately known by family as Toad, was killed she was buried alongside Mr Jones at Gorebridge Cemetery in Midlothian.

Jodi's mother has always been reluctant to speak publicly about her daughter's death.

Floral tribute
A huge floral tribute at Jodi's 2003 funeral
But the dead girl's aunts, Agnes Petkevicius and Diane Inkster, said their niece was a "typical teenager - into clothes and the music of her liking".

She always considered herself and others as individuals and did not like "being labelled".

Ms Petkevicius said: "Jodi was a particularly thoughtful and private person.

"Her thoughtfulness is reflected in her home-made presents and the time and effort put into them.

"The private person is reflected in the poetry she wrote for others and herself.

"Hopefully, this aspect of her personality will be respected as much as possible."

Settling in

During the trial the jury heard that Jodi had smoked cannabis with Mitchell on the day she died.

Her mother spoke highly of her daughter during the trial, describing her as "very level headed" but also "very strong-minded".

Jodi Jones friends
School friends attended the youngster's funeral
She said she learned from police that Jodi had been self-harming, and she later discovered the girl had confided in her sister Janine.

She said Jodi initially had a difficult time settling in to life at St David's High School in Dalkeith

But by her second year, Jodi had got used to secondary school, was receiving good reports and was keeping on top of her work.

At her funeral, headteacher at her school, Marian Docherty, spoke of a friendly girl with strong opinions who had the gift of laughter.

On the day Jodi was laid to rest, killer Mitchell was broadcast on Sky News reading a poem about his girlfriend's brutal death.

He said he would only rest once the murderer was behind bars.

Mitchell's lies have now been exposed.


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