Double killer’s new bid for freedom

Double killer Darren Pilkington and (below) Carly Fairhurst
Double killer Darren Pilkington and (below) Carly Fairhurst

THE killer of a Wigan teenager should not be released any time soon, police and probation experts say.

But while the parents of Carly Fairhurst can take heart from this recommendation to a forthcoming parole hearing, the final decision on Darren Pilkington’s fate rests with a judge.

Carly Fairhurst

Carly Fairhurst

The thug, who inflicted fatal injuries on his 19-year-old girlfriend at a house they were minding in Ince seven years ago, is due to have his case reviewed again next month.

The 30-year-old will first be bidding to be moved to a lower category of prison - he is currently in a high security one - as a prelude to eventual release.

Thus far Pilkington, formerly of Francis Street, Hindley, has been unsuccessful. That he is said to have had discipline problems while inside, and the fact that Carly was his second manslaughter victim (he was given four years for killing Hindley man Paul Akister in 2000) will have counted against him.

But each time a parole hearing looms, Carly’s parents Trevor and Sheila must prepare themselves for the worst. They will not be attending the hearing on July 15, even when they finally discover where he is currently incarcerated (last time it was at HMP Garth, Leyland).

Trevor said: “When these hearings come round it is a very upsetting time for us. It brings everything back and this hearing is 18 months later than we were originally told.

“We try to look on the positive side. Had he been given a life sentence rather than an indefinite one it is quite possible he would have been out by now.

“And we have had a letter saying that the police and the probation will still not be recommending that he comes out. But the buck stops with the judge.”

Since their daughter died the Fairhursts have been heavily involved in raising money for Wigan Victim Support and Witness Service’s counselling arm and in promoting an anti-domestic violence message.