Stabbed Canadian teenager had an ‘unforgettable laugh’

Ashley Wadsworth travelled to Chelmsford in Essex late last year to be with her boyfriend, Jack Sepple, whom she met through a dating app.

10 February 2022

A Canadian teenager who was stabbed to death in Essex was “kind” and “beautiful” with an “unforgettable laugh”, her family said.

Ashley Wadsworth, 19, travelled to the UK late last year to be with her boyfriend, whom she met through an online dating app.

She was pronounced dead at an address in Tennyson Road in Chelmsford on February 1.

An inquest, which was opened on Thursday, heard that she died of stab wounds to the chest.

Her 23-year-old boyfriend, Jack Sepple, is charged with her murder.

In a tribute released through Essex Police, Ms Wadsworth’s family described her as a “kind” and “beautiful” woman.

They said she had a “spontaneous, witty, kind personality”, an “unforgettable laugh”, and was “fiercely loving and loyal to her family and friends”.

Ashley Wadworth’s family said she was had a ‘spontaneous, witty, kind personality’ (Family handout/Essex Police/PA)

The family, who police said are currently not able to be in Essex, said they admired the teenager’s sense of adventure and that she had travelled extensively within Canada, as well as to Mexico, California and England.

She spoke three languages – English, French and Spanish – and travelling “encouraged her love of language”, they said.

The family said she dreamed of becoming a lawyer, strived for good grades, and had been accepted at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops, British Colombia.

Ms Wadsworth, originally from Vernon, British Colombia, moved to Chelmsford in November 2021, she wrote on Facebook.

Earlier this year, she posted photos online of her “amazing trip to London”, where she had been sightseeing.

Her family said she had recently found faith, with the Mormon Church.

Chelmsford teenager death
Court artist’s sketch of Jack Sepple in the dock in an earlier hearing at Colchester Magistrates’ Court (Elizabeth Cook/PA)

They thanked those who organised a vigil for the teenager in Chelmsford, adding: “Ashley, you are beautiful to us, and we will miss you very, very much.

“It has touched us so deeply, there are truly no words to express our gratitude.

“They were able to do something for Ashley that we couldn’t, and we will be forever thankful.

“How lucky are we to have people from across the world care so much about a family that they have never met?”

Ms Wadsworth’s elder sister, Hailey, described her sibling as her “best friend”, and the teenager’s niece, Paisley, called her the “best aunty ever”.

The family recalled how Ms Wadsworth saved up her own money to buy Paisley her first swing set.

Sepple, of Tennyson Road, Chelmsford, was not asked to enter pleas to the charge of murder in an earlier hearing at Chelmsford Crown Court.

He was remanded in custody until a further hearing at the court on March 7.

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