Alex Rodda murder trial finds Matthew Mason, 19, guilty of killing teen

19-year-old Matthew Mason was convicted at Chester Crown Court of the murder of 15-year-old Alex Rodda, whose body was found near Woodland in Ashley Cheshire in December 2019.

The seven women and five men jury found Mason guilty of murder by a majority of 10 to two at Chester Crown Court.

Mason appeared to be crying in the dock after the verdict.

Members of Alex’s family were also in tears, as were two of the jurors.

Chester Judge’s Honorary Clerk Steven Everett thanked the jury and said, “Nobody can pretend this is an easy case.”

19-year-old Mason denied the murder of 15-year-old Alex Rodda but admitted beating him to death with a wrench in the woods on December 12, 2019 in Ashley, Cheshire.

The farmer’s son has claimed he experienced a loss of control after being blackmailed by a student at Holmes Chapel Comprehensive School for his sexual relationship.

The jury of seven women and five men retired shortly before 11 a.m. on Wednesday.

You have been asked to consider a loss of control judgment of murder or manslaughter.

During his taking of evidence, agricultural engineering student Mason told the court that he had driven Alex to a remote location to tell him to stop asking for money and that he had taken the wrench to “scare him”.

But he claimed Alex attacked him first.

The trial, which began on December 7, heard that Alex had contacted Mason’s then girlfriend Caitlyn Lancashire in November 2019 and told her he had sent “flirty” messages and an explicit picture and video.

Mason denied the allegations to his girlfriend, but began making payments into Alex’s bank account around the same time.

At the time of Alex’s death, Mason had transferred more than £ 2,200 and asked friends and family to borrow money, the court heard.

Mason of Ash Lane in Ollerton, near Knutsford, told the court he was straight but began to question his sexuality after news from Alex.

He admitted to having sex with the student but said he didn’t think his friends would accept him if he were gay or bisexual.

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