On the evening of Saturday, 19 March 2011, D.S. Stephen Fulcher receives a life-changing call that thrusts him into a race against the clock to save missing 22-year-old Sian O’Callaghan, who was last seen at a nightclub in Swindon. Steve knows from experience that he has a small window of time to find Sian alive, but his hopes are quickly dashed when his investigation leads him to Christopher Halliwell, a cabbie with sick obsessions. – GoodReads
I have just finished reading this book by former police officer Stephen Fulcher about his hunt for serial killer Christopher Halliwell. After obtaining a confession from Halliwell and discovering 2 bodies Fulcher was discredited and made into a pariah for breaching PACE guidelines. PACE sets out the correct procedure when it comes to questioning criminals. Some, including Fulcher, argue that it favours the criminal over the victim. After 2 trials over 5 years Halliwell was eventually convicted of both murders. In the final trial it was revealed that the police and forensics believed Haliwell returned to the body of his final victim up to 4 times in order to have sex with her corpse. Halliwell claimed to have killed as many as 6 when speaking to another inmate, but when the police found Halliwell’ss trophy stash they discovered 60 items of woman’s clothing, leading some to believe he may have committed many more murders. It seems like Halliwell may well be one of the UK’s most prolific killers, the UK version of Ted Bundy maybe?
The book raises some serious questions about who’s rights the law favours in cases such as this. While everyone agrees that the police should not ride roughshod over suspects and the law, surely the chance of possibly finding the victims alive and securing a conviction should prompt a review of the regulations.
4/5 Stars – A very thought provoking read.