The James Bulger case that shook Britain has gone down in history as one of the most horrific, and disturbing abductions in England. Friday afternoon of the 12th of February 1993 a 2 year old goes missing in a local shopping center in Bootel near Liverpool, his name was James Patrick Bulger. Despite the massive search to find the young 2 year old no one would expect the horrific outcome. This murder ignited an unprecedented wave of fury throughout the nation making this a crime that shook Britain.
Denise Bulger and her son James were with a family friend walking downtown in Bootel. Denise regally visited this place as her bus stopped right outside of the shopping center. Denise was holding hands with her son when they visited a butcher shop inside Bootel. Whilst Denise was concentrating on gathering her money to pay for her meat she was not paying attention, it only took seconds. James Bulger disappeared from sight. It was in this moment that Denise Bulger’s life changed for the worse.
For a child to go missing is not unheard of in shopping centers, but when a child is missing and has not turned up the police are immediately informed and are to the scene, Denise claimed that her and James were out to the butchers and James ran off and went missing they looked extremely hard yet they couldn’t find him, she was panicking for the search of the young boy, every second that goes by the search increases and intensifies in the shopping center and around Bootel, outside the shopping center are main busy roads and he was just waiting to be found, no one would have thought he would have been kidnapped.
The officers decide to widen their search for the young boy by looking in canals that he may have fallen into and scrap yards because Bootel is such a built up place it’s hard to find something when it’s been lost for hours it’s like trying to find a piece of hay in a stack of needles. Meanwhile Denise is taken into the police station and is shown many pairs of child’s shoes that have been found by officers.
A day passes and James seems to be lost forever and his parents remained at the police station worrying franticly because 24 hours is a long time for a young child to be lost in a city. The police had received the first major lead, a short clip from a CCTV camera of three children two of which are holding the hands of a young boy, the two boys were suspected to be the age from thirteen to fourteen, it wasn’t a clear recording of this video and there had been many young toddlers with their parents and other children walking through the shopping center on this day.
The mother claimed that it was James and she tried to comfort her knowledge that James was in the presents of other children and she knew that another child wouldn’t hurt a young toddler of James’s age, there was very grainy video CCTV footage of all three of them but it still reveled that James was walking away from the butcher shop led by the two young boys but still the footage is poor to tell for sure. The officers resolve to the media and ask the public for any information. Another day passes and there is no further information so all the Buglers can do is wait and hope that James is found safe.
The police had a wide search for two boys from the age ten to eighteen but they concentrated on boys from the age of fourteen, despite the help from the locals and police searches the next following day brings horrific and triadic news. BBC News “Protected under a police tent lies the body of a young boy found today by some children playing on a railway embankment. ” 1993 Sunday February 3rd The police were then faced with a massive man hunt for two young boys also the press had contributed to the search. James Bulger was found 48 hours later after leaving his mother’s side in the shopping center of Bootel.
James was only weeks away from his third birthday. James was discovered with the most catastrophic injures, the killers inflicted 42 injuries on the two-year-old. He had many fractures to the skull and the right side was shattered. The Coroner counted 22 bruises, splits and grazes on James’s face and head, 20 more wounds on his body. James had been struck by at least 30 blows by bricks also an iron bar; he had endured ‘a short period of survival’ after the attack. ‘It may only have been minutes,’ Dr Williams said on the seventh day of the trial. James was dead before a train severed his body.
The deep bruising, the cut on his forehead down to the skull and the damage to the back of the head together with many other injuries suggested bricks and an iron bar had been used, one of the killers poured paint in his eyes and inserted batteries in his anus. Earlier, the court had admitted as exhibits a catalogue of debris found around the body. Exhibit 17, a box of 27 bricks; exhibit 19, a blood- stained stone found near a child’s scarf; exhibit 28, his underpants; and exhibit 34, an iron bar part-rusted railway fishplate, 20ins long and weighing 22lbs.
Many of injuries to his legs had been inflicted when he was naked. The prosecution claims the killers stripped him from the waist. It is also claimed a grotesque indecency was inflicted on James: the foreskin of his penis was pulled back. Many of the injuries covered an area of less than one square inch. But others were massive. Dr Williams traced the lines of skull fractures, his left hand mapping the attack from the jaw, over the forehead, across virtually the entire skull. Brain damage was extensive, including a haemorrhage at the centre; one other implement was responsible for James’s suffering.
Injury number 13 was bruising to the area around the right cheek and ear. It was a severe blow which, Dr Williams said, left a pattern, a grooved mark. It was probably caused by stamping or kicking. The police at the time didn’t have the technology to enhance the video of the faces of the two young boys to continue the search of the two boys but the media had. It had been nearly three miles to where the boys took the James and to where he was found dead on the railway tracks in Bootel. The media had many sources of information all which led to the doors of two young boys Jon Venables and Robert Thompson.
The police first arrived at Robert Thompson’s house; his mother answered the door confused. The police sat down with Robert and told him what they arrived there for and Robert started to cry but they weren’t tears of sadness they were tears of empathy, both of the boys were taken into different police stations to be questioned. On the second interview that Robert Thompson had reveled that Jon Venables had been the one too lead James astray, then Robert tried to cover his own back by saying that Jon had taken him so far then he claimed he went with him and then he didn’t, then
he did. The boys had been seen by many people along the way to the railway station and that gave their statements to the police and this added to the case. Thompson denied doing anything to James yet Venables stated the same in the questioning, highly trained officers are to interrogate the two boys and sit through many hours of questioning, shortly after the nation is to be told some extremely shocking news that two ten year old boys had killed James Bulger.
The killers Jon and Robert dragged James down the streets and when the boys were confronted with challenges such as people on the street asking them what they were doing and the boys replied with “He’s out brother. ” The boys were confronted by thirty eight people and if the boys were asked why James was crying they had a story already prepared “He fell over and we’re taking him back to mum. ” The horrific thing is that the injures that James had when the public saw them were the cuts and bruises that the boys had already inflicted.
It’s disturbing to know that the story they had made was very cunning and they had the knowledge of what they were going to do to James, then James had been murdered just hours after. The boys had put James’s body on the rail line to which a train engineer had spotted the corpse of James which lays there lifeless. The engineer thought it was just a dead cat until he later saw the legs to then it was too late. James’s lifeless body had been cut in two; the train engineer thought that he had killed James, shortly after the body was discovered by a group of children.
Jon and Robert Planned to make their murder to look like an accident but what the boys didn’t know is that the forensics of 1993 would reveal what the boys actually had done to James. Jon Venables and Robert Thompson are charged with the abduction and murder of James Bulger, they both were acting in concert to harm James and take his life. There was many times where the boys tried to kill James by attempting to push him in a canal also attempting to push him in front of a van on the street. The Trail for the boys was held in mid February. There was rage running through the nation of what these boys had done.
Following the appearance of Robert and Jon at the magistrate’s court in Bootel just ten days after James’s death that is where the killers Jon Venables and Robert Thompson had their trail date which would have been held later that year. In the trial, Jon Venables stated that it was half term and he was in charge of the schools gerbils and he was looking forward to it and on his way to the school where he would of picked the gerbils up he bumped into Robert Thompson, Robert said to Jon lets go robbing, which meant going to the strand and messing around and such. Jon had no idea that he was going to become a killer that day.
The boys had to be back at seven o’clock because Jon’s mum was going to go to a DVD store and from that point on they had became bored, it was suggested by Robert “Lets grab a kid. ” So they grabbed James and walked him around for hours then they took him up to the train tracks and did the most unspeakable things to him. The trial lasted seventeen days and was drawn to a conclusion that they were guilty and they started to cry, the judge made an unexpected decision to release the information on the boys their names and the boys back grounds, which was an unprecedented decision in the British legal system history.
In years to come the boys are given new names. James’s family had to wait to see the sentence of which the boys would get; finally the judge said that they would serve eight years which started lots of political debates and disruption in the public which has lasted decades. Most people wanted ten years so their sentences are reviewed only ten days from when the trail was held by the lord chief justice which he lifted their sentence to ten instead of eight, but the public was not pleased and wanted an even higher sentence.
There was a petition signed and hundreds of thousands of people had signed to increase the time that the boys were going to spend. The petition worked and Robert and Jon were to spend fifth teen years without their freedom, the boys requested to be heard by the European court. The fifth teen year sentence was denied and was described as unlawful which brought the time back down. They had the correct sentence and they were also given rehabilitation and being placed into detention centers, these detention centers were places of luxury and a lot of misfortunate children would be jealous of.
It cost two hundred thousand pound a year per inmate. In 1999, the boys are now sixteen years old are given news that the trial in 1993 was not impartial which set off the rage and anger throughout the nation, this has set a long path to when the boys will be released. The boys had still been going through rehabilitation and Thompson has wrote in letter to his friends that he thinks it’s all a joke and he is also abscessed with sex, he’s just playing the system.
In 2001 the two boys are given new identities costing a quarter of a million pounds each and released into society, they are at the age of 18. They haven’t spent a day in an adult facility, for now they are under strict guidelines and are always being watched. In 2010 Jon Venables is rearrested for possession of child pornography on his laptop, news quickly spreads and the government are forced to release the information. Jon had disobeyed his probation and had been going to pubs near James’s mother and had been reveling his real identity.
Venables had compromised his means and been arrested twice on probation for violence and drug possession also he had pretended to be a mother with a seven year old child and sell them on the internet. Venables was charged with processing and distributing child pornography and was given a two year sentence. This all started with the murder of James Patrick Bulger, a two year old boy who was loved by his family and his life was taken away by two monsters, in the words of his mother,
“No words can explain how much I miss him, there’s not a day that goes by where I don’t think about him, he’s thing I think of in the morning, he was a very bubbly child, he loved to play and didn’t give me a minute, he loved being read to and he used to read the books back to me, he was so lively from the minute he opened his eyes to the minute he closed them. ” BBC. Documentary-Bulger Case, Aired, April 15th 2012 Ben Rankin . The Mirror. 25 Feb 2013 16:30 Dr Williams. The Bulger Injures. Wednesday 10 November 1993