THE FATHER of a Feltham schoolgirl strangled nearly 30 years ago says he will feel relief if alleged serial killer Peter Tobin is revealed to be her murderer.
Detectives are looking into a possible link between the death of Patsy Morris in 1980 and Tobin - a convicted killer whose former home is being torn apart by officers hunting for bodies.
Last week the skeletons of two teenage girls - Vicky Hamilton, 15, and 18-year-old Dinah McNicol - were found buried at his old address in Margate, Kent.
The gruesome discoveries have prompted fears that 61-year-old Tobin, who was jailed this year for raping and murdering a Polish student in Glasgow, may also be responsible for the deaths of up to 17 more girls.
As the search continues, police have begun re-examining a string of murders and disappearances, including the mysterious death of 14-year-old Patsy, whose body was dumped on Hounslow Heath 26 years ago.
Her father George Morris, 72, said: "Although it's been very hard seeing Patsy's face all over the papers and TV again, in a way it would be a huge relief if it was him and her killer was finally behind bars.
"For years I've been checking the details of every murder in the press looking for similarities to what happened to Patsy. Time doesn't heal something like this."
In the summer of 1980, Feltham officers spent two days searching for Patsy after she disappeared from Feltham Comprehensive School during a lunch break.
On June 18 a police dog handler uncovered her rain-soaked corpse hidden under bushes, just half a mile from her home in Cygnet Avenue.
"I searched with them," said Mr Morris, who moved his wife and three surviving children to Vernon Road after the tragedy.
"I had to hold things together for my wife and kids and later I was the one who identified her body. The rain made it very difficult. The only way I could tell was by a birth mark on her ankle.
"One minute she was my happy-go-lucky girl heading off to school and the next time I saw her she was laying on a slab in the morgue."
A post-mortem revealed the teenager, who was still wearing her school uniform, had been strangled with a ligature but showed no signs of sexual assault or other injuries.
Speaking at the inquest two weeks after her death, Det Chief Supt Michael Huins said: "We do not think it was a personal matter but was a random attack by someone who did not know her."
Despite a long investigation nobody was ever charged with Patsy's murder. Her family's hopes were briefly raised by an arrest in 1996 but the suspect was later released without charge.
A spokesman from Hampshire Police refused to confirm whether Patsy's murder was one of the cases being re-opened but said they were looking into a number of deaths and disappearances.
Mr Morris, whose wife passed away in 1999, added: "The pain is always with you. In a way it's been worse for these other families because at least we knew Patsy was dead. It won't bring her back but it would help me to know her killer had finally been caught."