Liberty bid by killer is refused

Carly Fairhurst

Carly Fairhurst

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A DOUBLE killer has lost his latest bid for freedom.

Darren Pilkington, serving an indeterminate sentence for the manslaughter of Hindley teen Carly Fairhurst, had been hoping the Parold Board would permit his move to a lower category of jail as the first step towards release.

But just days after a hearing at HMP Garth in Leyland, Carly’s parents Trevor and Sheila received the news they had hoped to hear. It means that Pilkington, now 29, looks like spending more time behind bars than he would have done if handed down a conventional life sentence.

He had previously been jailed for the manslaughter of Hindley man Paul Akister but was released early for good behaviour only then to kill Carly. Mr Fairhurst said he was delighted the Ministry of Justice “had got it right for once”.

The tragedy took place one night in January 2006 at an address in Higher Ince that Pilkington and Carly were house-sitting after the victim was burgled.

The pair had been involved in a relationship for about four years, during which time there had been violent arguments and several separations but Carly would always play down any trouble with her parents.

On the fatal evening, the couple left the house for a night out with friends but it ended with a row between them and back at Thirlmere Avenue, there was a violent struggle in which Carly was fatally injured.

Under questioning, Pilkington came up with various conflicting accounts, including one that he had come home to find her already injured. But eventually he said that they had fought and that he had fended her off on the landing and caused her to fall downstairs. Carly died in hospital seven days later.

Mr Fairhurst said: “We were delighted to get a phone call from the Ministry of Justice to say that he had not only been refused parole but also a downgrading to a lower category of prison.

“The ministry has made the right decision for once. Too many serious offenders are let out early only to offend again. Look what happened to Carly.”