Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Peter Sutcliffe seeks release date as psychiatrist says conviction for murder was wrong.

Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper, has started an appeals process demanding a date for his release from prison, with a psychiatrist from Broadmoor speaking in his defence and arguing that, at the time of the murders, he was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia and was, therefore, not guilty of murder and should have been found guilty of manslaughter due to “diminished responsibility”.

Dr Murray’s report from 2006 concluded that Sutcliffe may be safe for release within a “low single figures” of years, the court was told.

His treatment has had a “very considerable success” and if he continues with it he poses a low risk of offending, the report added.

I note that this "very considerable success" is dependent on him continuing his treatment and wonder, what would happen if he stopped it?

I am all for the notion that prison is supposed to be as much about rehabilitation as it is about punishment, but it's simply fanciful to imagine that Peter Sutcliffe will ever be allowed to roam Britain's streets again.

It is irrelevant to argue whether or not Sutcliffe suffered from paranoid schizophrenia at the time of the attacks. Those attacks are seared into the nations consciousness, they will never be forgotten. Nor will any psychological condition any psychiatrist comes up with ever allow them to be forgiven.

There have been many cases where people convicted of seriously violent crimes have eventually been released to live productive lives - the case of Jimmy Boyle instantly comes to mind - but it's impossible to imagine that this would ever occur in the case of Sutcliffe.

The fact that his psychiatrists are speaking of his "paranoid schizophrenia" is enough to guarantee that.

No British Home Secretary is going to be the man who released Peter Sutcliffe. That's simply a no brainer...

Click here for full article.

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