Girl left for dead recalls details of attack

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The Independent Online
Josephine Russell, the nine-year-old girl who witnessed the murders of her mother and sister, is beginning to remember details of the brutal attack, it emerged today.

Four weeks after the attack in which her mother Lin, 45, and six-year- old sister, Megan, were murdered, a speech therapist is hoping to get Josephine talking again within a few months.

Josephine survived the attack near the family home in the Kent countryside. But she suffered severe head injuries.

Her father, Dr Shaun Russell, revealed her progress today as police announced they were anxious to trace a man seen near the scene of the attack.

Dr Russell spoke of a "rather disturbing incident" when a woman walked past Josephine's hospital bed carrying a bag similar to that used by Lin.

"She lunged for it and screamed the name of her dog, Lucy, also killed in the attack which is an indication that something is still there in her head," he told GMTV.

Mrs Russell and Megan were attacked as they walked along an isolated footpath to their home in Nonington, near Canterbury.

Looking calm but tired, Dr Russell said: "She is physically just about 100 per cent as far as we can assess. Her major impairment now is her speech."

Kent police yesterday issued a description of a man they believe may be a crucial witness. Detective Inspector Ray Cozens, one of the inquiry team, appealed for him to get in touch.

He is described as aged 25 to 35, white, of slim, muscular build and of average height. He was seen on 9 July at around 4.45 pm near Chillenden Windmill. He has dark brown collar-length hair, and was wearing dark trousers with an open top.

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