A murderer who smiled when he ran over a costume designer when she tried to stop him from stealing her purse will be released from prison.
Mark Woolley was sentenced to life in 2001 for mowing down Elizabeth Sherlock when she gave chase after her purse was snatched.
The former heroin addict has already fled twice in 2018 and 2019 after breaking conditions when he was released on his driver’s license, before being caught and put back behind bars.
Now the Parole Board has indicated that it is satisfied that he can be released under strict conditions.
Woolley was convicted of murdering Mrs. Sherlock after chasing his then-girlfriend Jackie Moorehouse, who pinched her purse – containing just £ 20 in cash, a cell phone and bank cards – while she was with her husband at the station on Easter Sunday. Euston was waiting to take the train to Wigan for her father’s birthday.
The couple stole to pay for their heroin addiction and had dozens of previous convictions.
Woolley’s trial heard he “had to smile” as he drove off with Moorehouse in a car, leaving Mrs. Sherlock by the side of the road, a stone’s throw from her husband.
Mrs. Sherlock had jumped on the car in pursuit after shouting “stop that thief – she’s got my bag”, and clung to the wiper blades, but the car wouldn’t stop.
The court heard the designer thrown in the air in front of the car and thrown in the air like a rag doll when she was run over, before Woolley smiled as they drove away.
According to a document outlining the Council’s decision, at the time of his crimes, Woolley had a way of life “that revolved around drugs” and mingled with like-minded people with his “core beliefs” adding to his insult.
His behavior behind bars was described as ‘generally compliant’ and praised for acting as a caretaker for other inmates.
But his probation officer warned that he needed more psychological counseling in custody before he could be “considered perfectly safe” to be released.
A psychologist found that all risks were at a “manageable level,” as he had not been violent or aggressive behind bars, according to the Parole Board papers.
In making their decision, the Council has taken into account his motivation to participate in rehabilitation and his “positive life goals”.
He will face “strict restrictions” on his movements and activities and who he speaks with – including a ban on contacting the victim’s family – and he will have to live in designated accommodation.
In addition to continuing to behave, he must disclose all relationships and details of all vehicles to which he has access, participate in drug tests, and have an electrical tag and curfew.
A spokesperson for the Parole Board said: “Decisions focus solely on the risk that a prisoner may pose to the public if released and whether that risk is manageable in the community.
The panel carefully examined a whole host of evidence, including details of the original crime, any evidence of behavioral change, as well as the harm and impact the crime had on the victims.
“Parole reviews are conducted thoroughly and with the utmost care. Protecting the public is our number one priority.”