A neighbour whispers “is that the woman whose daughter was...”

Her shaky voice trails to a polite, awkward hush.

Close to everyone in Dumbarton and the Vale residents know the story of 14-year-old Caroline Glachan, brutally murdered 20 years ago.

Her killer has never been caught. They could still be walking the streets.

The trouble is, no one does more than whisper what happened. No one has spoken aloud who killed Caroline to the police.

The “tight-knit” community of Renton is said to be protecting their own.

Almost 20 years to the day since Caroline, a bubbly, joyful, fun-loving teenager was murdered, the Reporter is retracing what happened and appealing for anyone with information to come forward.

Here's what we know: On Saturday, August 24, 1996, Caroline Glachan, a fourth-year pupil at Our Lady and St Patrick's High, left her friends at Ladyton Shopping Centre around 11.30pm. Her mother, Margaret McKeitch (formerly Glachan), was out celebrating her 40th birthday.

Caroline walks along poorly-lit paths near the River Leven towards Renton.

Around 11.15pm and 12.30am, a female is seen by witnesses on the path.

Around 12.15am, a man with sharp features is seen wearing a brown or green waterproof jacket at the Dillichip Bond, a short distance from Dillichip Loan.

Two men, one fitting the description of the hooded, sharp-featured man seen earlier, are seen at 12.45am running past the Kippen Dairy and Laughing Fox public house towards Main Street, Alexandria. One of the men was apparently bloodstained.

On Sunday morning, Margaret phoned police to report Caroline missing. She had run away before and been traced safe and well two days later, police said, so Margaret and Caroline's friends were not immediately concerned.

Police divers searched the River Leven and a passer-by, reportedly a drug addict, discovered Caroline's body on Sunday afternoon at the edge of the river near St Martin's Primary School and the Vale of Leven Academy.

Caroline was found fully clothed in black denims, a black “Chippie” jumper/sweatshirt. Only her training shoes had been removed.

Later, in 2016 TV programme, “Unsolved”, by investigator Donal McIntyre, it is speculated the killer may have tried to recover something from her shoes.

Police divers continued to search the water on Monday to search for clues. Other officers comb the river banks. Police say there is no suggestion of sexual assault or drugs involved.

At a press conference, Caroline's grandfather, William McDermott, said: “This has happened in Renton. I was born and bred there and I know how close-knit the Community is, I would ask anyone who knows anything to tell the police.”

An unnamed local business reportedly offers a four-figure reward for information on the killer(s).

A 14-year-old girl retraces Caroline's steps on the following Saturday after the murder in a reconstruction to jog people's memory.

In the weeks that followed, detective chief inspector Jeannete Joyce confirmed no drugs or alcohol were in her system when she died.

She said Caroline was “dabbling” in heroin but reports had been “blown out all proportion". Adding: "What we are talking about here is the murder of a 14-year-old girl."

CI Joyce added she was “satisfied” that someone local knows the identity of the killer.

A young girl contacts police anonymously in a “very distressed state” in the week of September 25. She hangs up and police appeal for her to call back.

Police issue further appeals for several people: a swarthy skinned man aged 30-35 with dark hair and moustache who frequents Dillichip Park and may have a dog called Bruno or Buttons; a youth on a scrambler motor bike with yellow mud guards; two men, one with a dog and another with fairly long dark brown hair; and two females seen on the towpath the day of the murder.

One is said to be 15 years old, around 5ft7 to 5ft10 and wearing a dark trouser suit.

In the week of October 30, police release an artist's impression of the sharp-featured, hooded man wearing a green jacket with light coloured lining. He is said to be roughly 4ft 5 tall and aged 20 to 25.

Margaret McKeitch and Caroline's friends continue to issue regular appeals for information every year.

The 2016 “Unsolved” TV programme features Clive Driscoll, a former detective inspector with Metropolitan Police, who said: “I think it is possible to solve. In these types of cases in my experience the police possibly know who was the perpetrator but it’s getting it beyond the threshold of reasonable doubt.”

Ms. McKeitch told the Reporter in 2016: “You do get people coming up and saying they have heard this or that but it shouldn’t be me they are coming to it should be the police they are going to.

"I do have a few names in my head but it’s speculation so I can’t openly say. But if they are watching they will know.”

If you know more about Caroline's murder, contact police by calling 101 or anonymously phoning Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.