My activities among people in prison and hurt by the system frequently render me concerned regarding the seemingly commonplace also unquestioned corruption and cruelty. Terry Allen’s case is one such example. In a recent letter in the public domain at his request Terry told me –
“In 1969 I burgled the Horncastle Garage and stole some money, I worked
for the place and got questioned about the burglary but was never charged.
A while later I read in our local newspaper that a lad got sentenced to two
years in prison for my crime. I wondered how on earth did he get convicted
because obviously there couldn’t have been any evidence against him.”
Subsequently Terry was arrested for another burglary and he confessed to the Horncastle Garage job telling the local police an innocent man had been imprisoned for his crime, their reply –
“You ever tell anyone what you have just told me and you will find yourself
So deep in shit you’ll never find your way out of it.”
Terry was just seventeen years old at the time and he goes on to comment that “Reading police force have been setting people up for some time.” This raises an issue those protesting their innocence are so often faced with, the integrity of the police investigation. It takes hard work and stress to refer a case to the Criminal Cases Review Commission and from there to The Court of Appeal. If someone is innocent they may be sure there will be those in the system who are only too well aware of this.
Often there is a reluctance to be critical of the police. Crucial to this, I personally feel, is the fact that police and other areas of the system can get away with far too much far too easily and they know it.
At the time of writing (May 2011) Terry has been moved from Coldingley Prison to Leyhill which is an open prison. On May 9th 1986 he was convicted of the murder of his friend twenty six year old Anita Kirkwood – his sentence was life with a sixteen year tariff.
A friend had discovered Anita’s body her hallway at approximately 9 a.m. on 17th July1985. On the 18th of July, following the discovery of his girl friend in bed with another man, Terry attempted suicide and was found in a car by ambulance staff trying to end his life by carbon monoxide poisoning.i
The ambulance men broke his two front teeth in order to insert an airway. In hospital Terry was attached to a life support machine for two days and received a complete blood transfusion as his blood was 76% contaminated with carbon monoxide poisoning.
A week later police removed him from hospital. At this time the police were given twenty “sedatives” for Terry with instructions to give him two of these tablets each day. At that time there were no external injuries and Terry is questioned for two days.
Then, when he is taken to HMP Winchester Terry had a large burn hole in his right
ankle and his left arm was bruised black and blue from wrist to shoulder. Also, when Terry was released from hospital police were given, as we have noted, twenty sedatives yet he is handed over to Winchester prison with forty six sedatives inevitably raising the question where did the additional sedatives come from and how many, if any, had he been given.
Terry has told me he remembers neither his time in police custody or his alleged confession which he had not even seen before being committed to crown court in October 1985. Neither does he remember ever being declared fit to be detained and questioned.
In documents that I have seen, Terry argues as to the judge’s misdirection of the Jury. Terry’s case is another clear indication of the bullying and corruption that identify the British “justice” system. Terry has even named those he knows to be actually responsible for Anita’s death. In June 1986 he was visited in prison by police from Kidlington who confirmed his suspicions.
Terry was, at that time effectively declared innocent yet, the police told him they could do nothing as the case was closed and their hands were tied unless
and until it was re-opened. Terry wrote to the home office who contacted the relevant police force only to be told that Terry had lied to them and that he was, in their view, guilty of Anita’s murder.
1/12/11 – Terry has received full legal aid funding for DNA Tests and was told results would be to hand in five weeks, he has been waiting for over 16 weeks – he would value all letters of support and at advice to HMP Leyhill, Bristol, GL12 8BT
Terry was assured by his Q.C. that all needed witnesses will be called to court yet Terry states that no defence witnesses were called. The first witness called is Anita’s sister Marion. It transpired that the statement Marion was shown was not the one given to the police; Terry claims she is telling the truth and his Q.C. knows this very well. Even his own defence team seemed to be complicit in taking Terry’s freedom from him.
Terry argues that the entire case against him was manufactured by Reading Police and that are guilty of falsifying statements and forensic evidence, conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and perjury. Police have even gone to the length of superimposing Terry’s teeth marks on Anita’s left breast thereby linking his physical presence to Anita. Terry’s defence Q.C. Mr. Conti (now a circuit judge) made no effort to question this sample of faked evidence.