‘Killer should have hanged’
Thursday, 29 December 2016
A FORMER South Antrim MLA has branded the decision to allow a former soldier who threw a defenceless grandmother to her death to seek parole in just nine years 'an absolute bloody disgrace'.
Adrian Watson knew both Pauline Carmichael and her killer Alan Foster, and he believes the tariff handed down is 'derisory, disgusting and unjustifiable'.
Foster had consistently denied the murder in February 2015, but he sensationally changed his plea just as the trial was scheduled to begin.
The court heard that the 38-year-old had expressed 'genuine remorse' for his 'despicable' crimes and tendered an apology to the deceased's family.
His defence team also claimed their client suffered from post traumatic stress disorder after witnessing 'horrific scenes of slaughter' first-hand while serving with the Royal Irish Rangers in Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Mr Justice Treacy said another mitigating factor was an acceptance that when Foster threw the frail 62-year-old over a bridge into the icy waters of the Sixmilewater river 40 feet below he 'intended to cause grievous bodily harm, not to kill'.
Foster was sentenced to life imprisonment, but must serve a minimum term of nine years before he can be considered for release.
And that, according to Mr Watson, is a 'monumental slap in the face' to the Carmichael family.
*Read the full story in this week's Antrim Guardian
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