Every time we turn on the tv or open a newspaper, we see another case of child abuse or child murder. However there has been some cases that stand out from the rest and receive massive media involvement. Here are a few of those cases – Click the Red heading on each for a extensive and in-depth look at the crimes, the convictions and the early lives of some of the most prolific and dangerous child abusers and serial child killers that have shaped UK criminal history
She was dubbed the ‘Angel Maker’, a prolific serial killer responsible for the murders of around 400 babies, horrific crimes that sent a shock wave through 19th century Britain
Amelia Dyer preyed on the down-on-their-luck, desperate unmarried mothers who paid her to have their children adopted in the naive belief she would find them a better life.
But there would be no fairytale endings, instead this despicable woman simply took the money before strangling the helpless infants with dressmaking tape and dumping their bodies in the River Thames
For over 30 years Dyer was able to conduct her grisly trade with apparent impunity. Little wonder that she is now believed to be Britain’s worst ever serial killer.
Probably the most notorious British serial killers of recent history are Fred and Rosemary West, who abducted, tortured, raped and murdered an unknown number of women over a 20-year period.
They buried many of their victims under their home at 25 Cromwell Street, Gloucester. Fred West eventually committed suicide before being brought to face charges of murdering 12 people, including his first wife and eldest daughter. Rose West was convicted of 10 murders in Nov 1995
Another notorious serial killer was nurse Beverley Allitt, who suffered from psychological illness – Munchausen syndrome by proxy (MSbP) when she carried out the attacks between 1991 and 1993.
Allitt was given 13 life sentences in 1993 for murdering four children, attempting to murder another three, and causing grievous bodily harm with intent to a further six at Grantham and Kesteven hospital in Lincolnshire.
The Soham murders was an English murder case in 2002 of two 10-year-old girls in the village of Soham, Cambridgeshire.
The victims were Holly Marie Wells and Jessica Aimee Chapman. On 4 August 2002, after going out to buy some sweets, the girls passed the home of local school caretaker Ian Kevin Huntley, who called them into his house and then murdered them, apparently in a fit of rage after an argument with his girlfriend.
Huntley disposed of the girls’ bodies near RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk. In Dec 2003 he was convicted of two counts of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 40 years. His girlfriend, Maxine Ann Carr, who had provided Huntley with a false alibi, served 21 months in prison for perverting the course of justice
Jon Venables profile Robert Thompson profile – James Bulger murder
James Patrick Bulger (16 Mar 1990 – 12 Feb 1993) was a boy from Kirkby, England, who was murdered on 12 February 1993, when aged two. He was abducted, tortured and murdered by two ten-year-old boys, Robert Thompson (born 23 August 1982) and Jon Venables (born 13 August 1982). Bulger disappeared from the New Strand Shopping Centre in Bootle, near Liverpool, while accompanying his mother. His mutilated body was found on a railway line two-and-a-half miles away in Walton, two days after his murder. Thompson and Venables were charged on 20 February 1993 with Bulger’s abduction and murder.
The pair were found guilty on 24 November 1993, making them the youngest convicted murderers in modern English history. They were sentenced to custody until they reached adulthood, initially until the age of 18, and were released on a lifelong licence in June 2001. In 2010 Venables was returned to prison for violating the terms of his licence of release.
Peter Connelly (also known as “Baby P“, “Child A” and “Baby Peter“) was a British 17-month old boy who died in London after suffering more than 50 injuries over an eight-month period, during which he was repeatedly seen by Haringey Children’s services and NHS health professionals. Baby P’s real first name was revealed as “Peter” on the conclusion of a subsequent trial of Peter’s mother’s boyfriend on a charge of raping a two-year-old
Peter’s mother, Tracey Connelly, her boyfriend, Steven Barker, and Jason Owen (later revealed to be the brother of Barker) were all convicted of causing or allowing the death of a child, the mother having pleaded guilty to the charge
Moors murderers Ian Brady and Myra Hindley, both given indefinite life sentences, were two of Britain’s most demonised figures.
Their attacks on five small children, whom they disposed of on Manchester’s bleak Saddleworth Moor in the 1960s, scandalised the nation and continue to cause outrage. In 1966 they confessed to killing three children and then another two in 1987
In 2000 in London, England, an eight-year-old Ivorian girl Victoria Adjo Climbié (2 November 1991 – 25 February 2000) was tortured and murdered by her guardians. Victoria’s life was short and tragic. Victoria was beaten, starved, tied in a bin bag filled with her excrement and forced to sleep naked in a bath. She died in February 2000, bearing 128 injuries. Social workers missed 12 chances to save Victoria. Her death led to a public inquiry and produced major changes in child protection policies in England.
Peter Manuel, aged 31, was a serial killer in Scotland. He was the second to last person to be hanged in HM Prison Barlinnie and the third to last to be hanged in Scotland.
Manuel will have committed at least eight murders including teenagers and children by the time the police arrest him in 1958.
The Dunblane school massacre occurred at Dunblane Primary School in the Scottish town of Dunblane on 13 March 1996. The gunman, 43-year-old Thomas Hamilton, entered the school armed with four handguns, shooting and killing sixteen children and one adult before committing suicide
MARK Bridger will spend the rest of his life in prison after being found guilty of the abduction and murder of five-year-old April Jones. As the case unfolded in court and the details of the events were released it, Bridger was revealed not only as a paedophile but as a child killer who continued to lie about the disappearance of April. The case truely shocked a nation