Ex-policeman says he can help track Lisa Hession's killer

Lisa Hession
Lisa Hession

Police are being urged to take another look at one of the borough’s most notorious unsolved murders as the anniversary of the killing looms.

Schoolgirl Lisa Hession was brutally strangled to death 35 years ago in Leigh and no-one has ever been brought to justice for ending the life of the 14-year-old.

Chris Clark

Chris Clark

But now retired police intelligence officer Chris Clark, who spends his time looking into unsolved cases, believes he has information which could be useful to Greater Manchester Police (GMP).

And local true crime podcaster Scott Williams-Collier is backing Mr Clark’s work, which involves identifying someone he thinks should be investigated by detectives.

It is not the first time in recent years that members of the public have attempted to move the case along, with a social media group being set up to encourage anyone with crucial information to come forward.

But Mr Clark has begun digging into reports from the time of the killing to see if he can get the ball rolling in terms of matching a name to the descriptions given.

And he believes his deductions should be considered by Greater Manchester Police (GMP).

Mr Clark, who served in Norfolk Police and now lives in County Durham, said: “I’ve been looking at this for some time and I’ve tried to push GMP to look at the suspect I’ve told them about if they haven’t looked into it already.

“To me the suspect fits the criteria of a ‘baby-face killer’, which was in the local newspaper coverage at the time. I’ve got a photograph and there are some similarities with the police photo-fit.

“All sorts of names have been bandied around over the years. I dismissed the involvement of one suspect in one of my books.

“I just want the case not to be forgotten. I now devote my energy to unsolved cases for justice for the victims and some sort of closure for the people left behind.”

Mr Clark emailed GMP about his suspicions over the case in September.

Mr Clark’s work on the case has been backed by Mr Williams-Collier, who has a personal connection to the case.

He said: “I lived just around the corner at the time of the murder at Henry Street. It’s a case I am very interested in and would really like to see solved.

“I believe the police need to look at this suspect my friend has found. Hopefully raising awareness will trigger GMP into looking to see if he was involved.”

Lisa, who went to Bedford High School, was walking back from a party when she was subjected to the appalling and fatal attack.

She was sexually assaulted and strangled and found just 100 yards from her home in a dark alley behind Rugby Road, running parallel with bonneywell Road.

She left the party at a house on Leigh Road between 10.10pm and 10.15pm on the night of her death and the route, which was along well-lit main roads with plenty of people around with the exception of the final few hundred yards.

She was last seen alive by two customers at a takeaway on St Helens Road.

She passed the outlet and one of the people saw her turn into Buck Street, her normal route for returning home.

Her mum Christine, who began to worry at 10.45pm when Lisa was not home, made two fruitless searches of the area for her daughter.

A massive police operation was launched in the wake of her death but no-one was ever charged.

Police offered an enormous £50,000 reward in 2017 in the hope of finally cracking the case, but even that proved to no avail.

A fresh appeal was also made in 2018.

GMP has been contacted for a response.