Release of Police Killers

  flycatcher1 16:22 23 Oct 2014

I see that a criminal who killed two Policemen and was complicit in the murder of another is about to be released from prison. We cannot trust Politicians ( about anything), when Hanging was abolished I seem to remember that "Real Life" sentences were promised for Murders of Police Officers - yet another broken promise.

I am very much against hanging but I think that Life should mean Life for certain crimes. The Police are often called to carry out dangerous and life-threatening operations and they should be supported in every way. The Powers never,ever, seem to concern themselves with the victims of crime it is the "Human Rights" of criminals they seem to worry about.

  bremner 10:38 24 Oct 2014


I completely agree with what you have said - other than your "What tosh" comment. Far too polite!

We do not routinely arm our police and that should continue on the understanding that life will mean life for police killers.

Unfortunately the judge in Roberts trial believed that no Home Secretary would ever release him so did not give a life would mean life sentence. He could not foresee that the Home Secretaries power over such decisions would be removed.

  spuds 11:42 24 Oct 2014

"life will mean life for police killers."

And what about other people who have lost their lives assisting police in their line of duty. Shouldn't the same sympathies and laws apply to them.

My main thoughts on this particular event, is that the person in question is now 'institutionalised', and that might be a further punishment in itself on his release. There doesn't seem to be much said on his state of present health, so could this be another reason why the authorities see fit to release the person now. Perhaps pushing any responsibilities from themselves onto the community where he will be located. Its happened in the past, possibly painting a picture of a very caring and considerate nation.

  bremner 12:18 24 Oct 2014


I agree consideration should be given to full life terms for those murdered assisting an officer in the execution of their duty.

  Flak999 12:59 24 Oct 2014

Here is a quote from a Daily Telegraph article on the police murderer Harry Roberts:

"While serving his sentence, Roberts was rejected for parole after it was revealed he had allegedly harassed pensioner Joan Cartwright, 65, on a daily basis for four years from his cell after working at her animal sanctuary on day release.

He telephoned her almost every day for four years after suspecting she had given evidence which blocked his attempt to gain parole.

The calls, in which he spoke of tearing "limb from limb" anyone who spoke against him, coincided with a campaign of attacks on animals at the sanctuary which she ran in Chesterfield."

Attacks included a horse slashed with an axe, another blinded with an iron bar, a cat electrocuted, a peacock strangled and a donkey which had to be put down after being beaten."

Full article from which the above quote is taken

This piece of worthless human scum should die old, lonely and friendless in jail!

  Forum Editor 08:10 25 Oct 2014

The parole board commented on this decision, saying:-

"The decision to release is a matter for the board, which is independent - arrangements and the date of the release are a matter for the Secretary of State for Justice. We are unable to comment further on the details of this case."

There, in that short statement, lies the key to the problem. Three anonymous people have made a decision that is quite obviously a contentious issue. I would have thought it was very much in the public interest for someone to comment further; we should know what it was about this man's current state of mind that convinced three - presumably expert - people that he deserves his freedom.

The Home Secretary has no power to overturn the board's decision, but she has previously made it clear that the government will legislate to ensure that a life sentence in cases of the murder of a police office will mean imprisonment for life. Police officers, who sometimes work in life-theatening situations, deserve no less than that.

  Forum Editor 09:29 25 Oct 2014


The Justice Secretary said this when he announced plans to change the law regarding real life sentences for the murder of Police officers:

"Police officers play a vital role in keeping communities safe. As has been tragically demonstrated in recent years, this role is a dangerous one which can lead to officers paying the ultimate price while serving their community. It is essential that police and prison officers feel the full weight of the state is behind them as they fulfil their crucial duties."

I can't think of a better answer to your comment about protecting a specific occupation. In reality, the protection is probably not that great. I doubt that someone who kills a Police officer thinks about the consequences at the time. The value of special legislation lies in the symbolic message it sends to the Police service - it's tangible evidence of the way that society recognises the dangers that officers face in the execution of their duty - part of the contract between us and them, if you like.

  spuds 11:14 25 Oct 2014

Possibly worth a read about a cop killer in the USA?. click here

  Forum Editor 15:44 25 Oct 2014


In such a case - as I understand the proposed changes to the law - if the Police officer was murdered the killer would get a mandatory whole life sentence.

The person who murdered his brother would get a life sentence that would be subject to review. I see no special circumstances in the scenario you describe, and I don't see why a court should have a problem when it came to sentences - both people would get a mandatory life sentence, one would be in prison until he/she died, the other may not.

  bumpkin 21:49 25 Oct 2014

The circumstances need to be taken into consideration. I cant see any circumstances that shooting a policeman is justifiable unless you are a ruthless criminal determined to escape. One of my close neighbours a guy that I would have a drink with in the local pub shot 2 people one night, police everywhere. helicopters, house surrounded by police cars for days until they got him. It was a family feud and no way can I justify his behavior. The victims recovered and he got 30yrs for attempted murder. Things need to be put into perspective.

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