Double child killer Colin Pitchfork who raped and murdered two 15-year-old girls can be released, Parole Board rules

A DOUBLE child killer who raped and murdered two 15-year-old girls can be released, the Parole Board has ruled.

Sex-obsessed Colin Pitchfork was caged for life in 1988 for the rape and murder of teenage schoolgirls Lynda Mann and Dawn Ashworth in Leicestershire.

But the Parole Board today deemed that the 61-year-old – the first murderer to be convicted using DNA evidence – was no longer a danger to the public after being turned down for release on two previous occasions.

The killer will have 35 conditions attached to his release.

These include electronic tagging, lie detector tests and he must provide details of any vehicle he owns.

He must also not visit the area where his crimes were committed.

A document detailing the Parole Board decision said: "After considering the circumstances of his offending, the progress made while in custody and the evidence presented at the hearing, the panel was satisfied that Mr Pitchfork was suitable for release."

Pitchfork, who now calls himself David Thorpe after ditching his notorious name, raped and strangled Lynda, 15, in November 1983.

The teenager had left her home to visit a friend – but never returned.

Her body was found the next morning on a deserted footpath.

Three years later, Pitchfork, who worked as a baker, struck again – killing and raping Dawn, also 15,  in almost identical circumstances.

Her body was found less than a mile from where Lynda had been attacked.

After Dawn’s killing, Leicestershire Police launched the largest manhunt in its history, asking more than 5,000 local men to volunteer blood or saliva samples in a bid to match samples taken from the crime scenes.

No matches were found, but in 1987 a bakery colleague was overheard boasting that he’d received £200 for giving a sample while posing as Pitchfork.

The conversation was reported to police, and a month later Pitchfork was arrested.

He pleaded guilty to the rape and murder of Lynda and Dawn, and was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 30 years.

This was reduced on appeal to 28 years in 2009.

Local MP Alberto Costa said he had met the chief executive of the Parole Board for England and Wales Martin Jones to discuss the case.

 Following the meeting, Mr Costa announced he would write to the Secretary of State for Justice, Robert Buckland MP, to ensure both he and the Parole Board were aware of local concerns about the case.

Mr Costa said: "Colin Pitchfork’s heinous crimes quite understandably live long in the memory of many of my constituents and his case is still of considerable concern to residents in South Leicestershire.

“In light of his recent referral for a parole review, I was very pleased to meet with the chief executive of the Parole Board and to gain a better understanding of Pitchfork’s case in order to inform the next steps I will be taking on this matter.

"The safety and wellbeing of my constituents is, of course, paramount importance, so I want to ensure that the Parole Board are fully aware of Pitchfork’s crimes and his character before any decisions are made.”

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