Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Reign of Fear Lasted for Years and Reached All Corners of the Nation

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Reign of Fear Lasted for Years and Reached All Corners of the Nation

Article excerpt

VAN driver Robert Black was convicted of murdering three young girls, abducting a fourth and attempting to snatch another during his 1994 trial at Newcastle.

It was the killing of 11-year-old schoolgirl Susan Maxwell, from the village of Cornhill-on-Tweed, in Northumberland, that sent shock waves across the North East.

On July 30, 1982, she left her home to play a game of tennis across the Scottish border in Coldstream. Several witnesses saw her before the point at which she crossed the bridge over the River Tweed.

But at some point between the river and Coldstream, Susan was abducted by Black. He raped and strangled her and dumped her body by the side of a road near Uttoxeter, about 250 miles away in the Midlands.

The delivery driver's reign of fear ended in 1990 when he was arrested near Stow in the Borders with a six-year-old girl gagged, bound and stuffed head-first into a sleeping bag in the back of his van.

Black stood trial at Newcastle Crown Court's Moot Hall in April 1994 and denied the charges but was sentenced to life imprisonment. …

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