Star Hobson’s grandad says ‘we’re still struggling now’ two years after tot’s murder

The great-grandad of murdered toddler Star Hobson has revealed how the family is ‘still struggling’ two years on from her horrific death.

Little Star, who was just 16 months old, was killed by her mum’s bouncer girlfriend, Savannah Brockhill, 28, after suffering catastrophic abdominal injuries caused by blunt force trauma on September 22 2020.

Brockhill was ordered by a judge to serve a minimum term of 25 years after she was found guilty by a jury at Bradford Crown Court in December last year.

Star’s mum Frankie Smith, 20, was given 12 years in detention for causing, or allowing, the death after her sentence was extended by the Court of Appeal.

But two years on from the baby’s killing, David Fawcett, Star’s great-grandfather said he’s plagued by constant grief, adding: “It is something you will never get over”.

He said: “Some people said it will take time to get over, some other people said it is something you will never get over.

“We’re still struggling now. Anita has taken the worst of it. She cries every day over Star.

“She kisses a photo of Star on her fireplace first thing in the morning and last thing at night.

Anita, Star’s great-grandmother, said the family plans to release balloons and lay flowers to commemorate Star’s life.

She said: ‘My heart broke and it will never be mended. Star lived with us for three months. Anita did everything for Star.

“On the second anniversary, we are taking some balloons and flowers to her resting place.

“Her birthdays and the anniversary of her death are when we try to make it a special time.

“I’m surrounded by pictures of Star in my flat. I watch videos of her.”

Savannah and Frankie were both found guilty of separate crimes following Star’s death at a flat they shared in Keighley, West Yorkshire, on September 22, 2020.

Last year, Justice Lambert QC told a court that Star Hobson had become the victim of the lesbian couple’s “petty squabbles and jealous fights”.

She said: “Star was caught up in the cross-fire of your relationship.

“The detail of that relationship is graphically illustrated in the many hundreds of social media messages that you sent to each other.

“Those messages concern petty squabbles and jealous fights.

“Often fuelled by alcohol, those fights quickly escalated into an exchange of violent threats and ultimatums, which were obviously meaningless to you both.”

Speaking today, David revealed he still regularly visited Frankie Smith in detention, adding that Savannah had “smashed this family to smithereens”.

He said: “Brockhill got into Frankie’s head and took Star away from us. Savannah was calling all of the shots. Things just got worse. We were absolutely devastated.

“We try to stick together as a family. I go to visit Frankie, I go twice a month.

“Frankie will be OK, then she will ring me and she is heartbroken. She loved her (Star). She can’t believe she got into this relationship and caused this.

“Me and Frankie were very close. We did things like cycling and strawberry picking together.

“When Brockhill came along, she got into her head. I begged her to get away.

He added: “It’s just so sad. She just met the wrong person and turned all of our lives upside down.

“I can’t believe someone can do this and she (Brockhill) completely smashed this family to smithereens.

“Apparently Brockhill is walking around the prison she is in, walking about smirking, things like that.”

Star was described as absolutely adorable by David, who said he treasures the moments he had with her.

He said: “I miss her little character. She was eight or nine months when she came to live with us.

“She was absolutely adorable. She used to stare at me with those blue eyes.

“I couldn’t wait to get home to see her after work.

“If I could bottle those 11 weeks that she stayed with us, I would uncork that and love to be able to do that over and over again to re-live it. It was the best time of my life.”

David also thanked well-wishers for their continued support since Star died.

A mural has been painted in the children’s play area in Roberts Park in Saltaire – a place he and his family took Star to play.

David said: “The people around us have been absolutely amazing. People from Australia have sent us money to buy flowers for Star’s birthday.

“People have been absolutely fantastic. The good people out there make you feel better.

“These people have kept me going really. These people have been absolutely amazing.”