Sandra Dick: The recurring nightmare with no end in sight

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SHE would be 24 years old by now, perhaps with a career, perhaps with sights set on motherhood, probably just simply living her life.

Of course, all of that was denied to Jodi Jones in the most horrendous manner possible. Her terrible death on a quiet lane near her home in Easthouses brought immense pain and grief to her devastated family.

Her then-boyfriend Luke Mitchell’s conviction really should have brought to a conclusion at least one awful element of Jodi’s family’s pain. They – and all of us – should be able to sleep at night secure in the knowledge that the right person is being punished for her murder.

But sadly the Jodi Jones case is the tragedy that seems to have no end.

The trial had all the elements of a badly written crime thriller, featuring goth rock star Marilyn Manson, strange references to a 1947 Hollywood murder and claims of an obsession with the occult. There were drugs, knives and teenage Mitchell’s odd behaviour that included keeping bottles of urine in his bedroom and writing school essays about the devil.

Jolly fascinating, but none of it really hard evidence or proof of what happened on that fateful day. And Mitchell, however much we demonised him at the time, was convicted largely on circumstantial evidence.

News the case is to be reviewed by the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission has, understandably, distressed Jodi’s family. DNA found on her body – which many may have thought would have been dealt with by now – is to be analysed and could shed fresh light on who was in contact with Jodi around the time of her death.

The findings may not prove who did what. They may simply create more question marks to prompt further speculation about a conviction which some feel is not exactly Scottish justice’s finest hour – Mitchell’s questioning by police, for example, was described by three law lords in 2008 as “outrageous”.

None of this can give comfort to Jodi’s family who remain – like Jodi – the innocent victims of a hellish crime. Let’s just hope that the circus that has surrounded this tragedy for a decade can soon draw to an end and that the real killer – whether it is Luke Mitchell or someone else –serves their time.