Robert Brown: Family of Joanna Brown call on Dominic Raab to block killer’s release on licence after 13 years in prison
The family of a mother killed by her pilot husband in a violent attack at their home has called on justice secretary Dominic Raab to block his release from prison.
British Airways captain Robert Brown bludgeoned his wife Joanna to death with a claw hammer in October 2010 as their two young children cowered in a playroom.
Brown, who told police that he had been “stitched up” by a prenuptial agreement, then dumped the 46-year-old’s body in a makeshift coffin in Windsor Great Park.
He was acquitted of murder by a jury at Reading Crown Court in May 2011, but was jailed having previously admitted manslaughter on the ground of diminished responsibility.
Brown was sentenced to 24 years for manslaughter and a further two years for an offence of obstructing a coroner in the execution of his duty.
He is due to be released from prison on licence in November, at the halfway point of his sentence.
But Joanna’s mother Diana Parkes is campaigning to stop his release, which she believes is “nonsensical”.
The 83-year-old is calling for the justice secretary to intervene and block Brown’s release. Mr Raab has “pledged to give this case his closest personal attention”.
Speaking about Brown’s release, Ms Parkes said: “Our family is very fearful.
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“Not only our family, but my daughter’s friends and indeed the public at large. I fear for women that he might come into contact with.”
Calling for an intervention from Mr Raab, Ms Parkes said: “I would ask him to check our case very carefully and see how absolutely nonsensical it is that Brown is being released halfway through his sentence when the Probation Service is so understaffed.
“And I ask who is going to monitor him for 13 years of his licence?
“I really have no faith in the Probation Service being able to do this.”
A Ministry of Justice spokesperson said: “This was an appalling crime and our thoughts remain with Joanna Simpson’s family and friends.
“The deputy prime minister will do everything in his power to keep the most dangerous offenders behind bars and has pledged to give this case his closest personal attention.”
A charity set up in Joanna’s honour, the Joanna Simpsons Foundation, is calling on people to send a letter to their MP asking for Brown’s release to be stopped.
The charity is also due to host an event next in Westminster week they will launch their campaign.
Among those set to speak at the event are former Home Secretary Priti Patel, and Carrie Johnson, the wife of former Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
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