Murderers and those on life sentences could move into Appleton Thorn prison

Murderers and those on life sentences could move into Appleton Thorn prison

The prison

Clr Brian Axcell

First published in News

MURDERERS can now be housed in the open prison at Appleton Thorn Cross Youth Offenders Institute, the Warrington Guardian can reveal.

The Ministry of Justice has confirmed the category of prisoner allowed to be held at Thorn Cross has now been changed to permit ‘lifers’.

It means criminals sentenced to life in prison for the most heinous crimes like murder, manslaughter and arson, can be moved to the facility on Arley Road.

The prison is close to residential houses, Appleton Thorn Primary School, and a pub.

Residents in the area say they are ‘shocked and appalled’ by the changes, with ‘real concerns for our safety’.

The Moj says any prisoner must be risk assessed by a parole board before being transferred.

Clr Brian Axcell (Appleton - LD) said the threat of escape from the open prison would worry neighbours.

He said: “The residents of Appleton have been very understanding and supportive of the prison.

“This is a step too far.

“The concern is people that have committed serious offences could leave that prison.

“We are talking about murderers and violent criminals.

“Open prison should only be used for prisoners who do not pose a threat to the population.

“I can’t see that this is acceptable for people with a life sentence.

“In any open prison you think they are for the lower end of offending.

“I think people will be astonished and the community should have been informed.”

A spokesman for the Moj said transfers are only possible if an inmate is within three years of the minimum term of the life sentence ending.

The changes do not relate to sex offenders, who cannot be moved to Appleton Thorn YOI.

A prison service spokesman said: "All those located in open prisons have been rigorously risk assessed to be deemed suitable for these conditions.

“Anyone whose behaviour gives cause for concern can be returned to a closed prison immediately."

Appleton Thorn YOI was originally built as a unit for juvenile criminals.

However, age restrictions were removed in August 2012 to allow adults to be imprisoned there.

Clr Paul Kennedy (Hatton, Stretton and Walton - CON) said: “Most people will think inmates are 18-years-old, have got into a bit of trouble, and are trying to avoid a life of crime.

“It’s important people know you are talking about the most serious offences in society.”

Comments (10)

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9:59am Thu 27 Feb 14

old-codger says...

Appleton Thorn YOI was originally built as a unit for juvenile criminals.

This statement is not true, Appleton Thorn prison housed category B and C prisoners for years before it was turned into a YOI, Most of the houses are occupied by staff from the YOI. Whilst I am concerned that lifers may be housed there I am also concerned that WG print a fair and accurate story by telling the truth, The whole truth and nothing but the whole truth.
Appleton Thorn YOI was originally built as a unit for juvenile criminals. This statement is not true, Appleton Thorn prison housed category B and C prisoners for years before it was turned into a YOI, Most of the houses are occupied by staff from the YOI. Whilst I am concerned that lifers may be housed there I am also concerned that WG print a fair and accurate story by telling the truth, The whole truth and nothing but the whole truth. old-codger
  • Score: 6

1:09pm Thu 27 Feb 14

Nick Tessla says...

old-codger wrote:
Appleton Thorn YOI was originally built as a unit for juvenile criminals.

This statement is not true, Appleton Thorn prison housed category B and C prisoners for years before it was turned into a YOI, Most of the houses are occupied by staff from the YOI. Whilst I am concerned that lifers may be housed there I am also concerned that WG print a fair and accurate story by telling the truth, The whole truth and nothing but the whole truth.
The truth doesn't make good copy.
[quote][p][bold]old-codger[/bold] wrote: Appleton Thorn YOI was originally built as a unit for juvenile criminals. This statement is not true, Appleton Thorn prison housed category B and C prisoners for years before it was turned into a YOI, Most of the houses are occupied by staff from the YOI. Whilst I am concerned that lifers may be housed there I am also concerned that WG print a fair and accurate story by telling the truth, The whole truth and nothing but the whole truth.[/p][/quote]The truth doesn't make good copy. Nick Tessla
  • Score: 6

3:15pm Thu 27 Feb 14

GRUMPY PARENT says...

Better lock my door.
Still Grumpy
Better lock my door. Still Grumpy GRUMPY PARENT
  • Score: 0

5:31pm Thu 27 Feb 14

muckerman says...

Nothing new about long term prisoners finishing off their sentences in open prison conditions. Preparation for release.
Nothing new about long term prisoners finishing off their sentences in open prison conditions. Preparation for release. muckerman
  • Score: 5

6:08pm Thu 27 Feb 14

GRUMPY PARENT says...

muckerman wrote:
Nothing new about long term prisoners finishing off their sentences in open prison conditions. Preparation for release.
Actually your right they start at Cat A prisoners then b,c eventually cat d which is open prison. Maybe as a tester for release and how they can react in the community. I know people will not agree with me but the prison service have to abide by the sentence given by the courts. In doing so they say after say 20yrs in prison these offenders need to be able to adjust to civilian life which is difficult being locked up and following the prison regime. I wouldn't be that worried about the offenders going here as they will be fully risk assessed and at the end of their sentence so will be stupid to abscond and risk a further sentence!
[quote][p][bold]muckerman[/bold] wrote: Nothing new about long term prisoners finishing off their sentences in open prison conditions. Preparation for release.[/p][/quote]Actually your right they start at Cat A prisoners then b,c eventually cat d which is open prison. Maybe as a tester for release and how they can react in the community. I know people will not agree with me but the prison service have to abide by the sentence given by the courts. In doing so they say after say 20yrs in prison these offenders need to be able to adjust to civilian life which is difficult being locked up and following the prison regime. I wouldn't be that worried about the offenders going here as they will be fully risk assessed and at the end of their sentence so will be stupid to abscond and risk a further sentence! GRUMPY PARENT
  • Score: -1

6:42pm Thu 27 Feb 14

old-codger says...

Nick Tessla wrote:
old-codger wrote:
Appleton Thorn YOI was originally built as a unit for juvenile criminals.

This statement is not true, Appleton Thorn prison housed category B and C prisoners for years before it was turned into a YOI, Most of the houses are occupied by staff from the YOI. Whilst I am concerned that lifers may be housed there I am also concerned that WG print a fair and accurate story by telling the truth, The whole truth and nothing but the whole truth.
The truth doesn't make good copy.
Very true Nick, Very sad also.
[quote][p][bold]Nick Tessla[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]old-codger[/bold] wrote: Appleton Thorn YOI was originally built as a unit for juvenile criminals. This statement is not true, Appleton Thorn prison housed category B and C prisoners for years before it was turned into a YOI, Most of the houses are occupied by staff from the YOI. Whilst I am concerned that lifers may be housed there I am also concerned that WG print a fair and accurate story by telling the truth, The whole truth and nothing but the whole truth.[/p][/quote]The truth doesn't make good copy.[/p][/quote]Very true Nick, Very sad also. old-codger
  • Score: 3

3:30pm Fri 28 Feb 14

MAD 4 IT says...

i will invest in a BURGLAR ALARM then ! my dog will sort them out if they try break into my house ! not to keen that LIFERS will be jogging around appleton thorn !
i will invest in a BURGLAR ALARM then ! my dog will sort them out if they try break into my house ! not to keen that LIFERS will be jogging around appleton thorn ! MAD 4 IT
  • Score: -5

5:57pm Fri 28 Feb 14

Nick Tessla says...

MAD 4 IT wrote:
i will invest in a BURGLAR ALARM then ! my dog will sort them out if they try break into my house ! not to keen that LIFERS will be jogging around appleton thorn !
I feel sure your Camp-bed , black and white telly and tin-bath will be quite safe.
[quote][p][bold]MAD 4 IT[/bold] wrote: i will invest in a BURGLAR ALARM then ! my dog will sort them out if they try break into my house ! not to keen that LIFERS will be jogging around appleton thorn ![/p][/quote]I feel sure your Camp-bed , black and white telly and tin-bath will be quite safe. Nick Tessla
  • Score: 8

9:24am Sat 1 Mar 14

MAD 4 IT says...

hope PURPLE AKI catches up with nick t in the nick !
hope PURPLE AKI catches up with nick t in the nick ! MAD 4 IT
  • Score: -8

1:42pm Sat 1 Mar 14

MAD 4 IT says...

perfect prison for PURPLE AKI
perfect prison for PURPLE AKI MAD 4 IT
  • Score: -9

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