Murderer ‘on deathbed in prison’

Monday 20th June 2022 6:00 am
John Cannan ((Police photo) )

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A MURDERER from Bristol who dumped his victim’s body on the Quantock Hills 35 years ago has been reported by a national newspaper to be close to death in prison.

John Cannan, aged 68, has been serving a life sentence in Full Sutton Jail, in East Yorkshire, and would have been eligible to apply for parole in October after passing a minimum 35-year term.

The Daily Mirror newspaper said Cannan was receiving end-of-life palliative care and had been in poor health for several years and suffering partial paralysis and needing a wheelchair after a stroke.

Cannan was originally given a whole life sentence at his 1989 trial in Exeter Crown Court with a recommendation he should never be released but it was reduced on appeal to a minimum of 35 years.

He was convicted of abducting and killing Bristol woman Shirley Banks in October, 1987, the attempted kidnap of another woman the night before he snatched Mrs Banks, and raping a third woman the previous year.

The remains of Mrs Banks were found six months later lying in a stream in woodland close to Dead Woman’s Ditch, an earthwork designated as an ancient monument near Over Stowey.

Cannan also remains the prime suspect in the 1986 murder of estate agent Suzy Lamplugh, aged 25, who disappeared in London days after he had been released from prison for the knifepoint rape of another woman.

Ms Lamplugh was never found and she was declared dead in 1993 but Cannan has denied any involvement in her death.

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