Sons of mum who killed their dad with a hammer call for her to be RELEASED from prison

Sons of mum who killed their dad with a hammer call for her to be RELEASED from prison

Sally Challen was caged for life after admitting battering "abusive" partner Richard to death in 2010.

After killing him she drove from their home in Claygate, Surrey, to Beachy Head, where The Samaritans talked her out of committing suicide.

Challen, 64, who has served seven years, was portrayed at her trial as a jealous wife who battered Richard to death because she believed he was having an affair.

But fresh evidence suggests she was a long-standing victim of Richard’s “coercive and controlling” behaviour will be heard by the Court of Appeal in February.

A change in the law in 2015 that factors in psychological manipulation could mean she is freed at an appeal hearing next month.

Her sons David and James say their father abused their mother and are rallying for her release.

Her son David, 31, and his elder brother James, 34, are now rallying for her release.

David told the BBC: ""It was tick, tick, tick – everything: financial abuse, psychological manipulation, controlling her freedom of movement, just controlling every facet of her mind.

"It was almost like she was a robot and he punched in the commands of what she had to do."

He added: "He didn't like her having any independence in terms of friends, it was only friends together. It was total control."

David says his dad cheated on his mum throughout their marriage and visited prostitutes.

The brothers also say he restricted her use of the car and controlled her money.

He added: "She took that hammer and she killed my father. I recognise what happened but we have to recognise what psychological control does.

"She has been manipulated psychologically all her life, tied down by this man, my father.

"She deserves her right to freedom. She deserves for her abuse to be recognised."

The campaign group Justice for Women, led by human rights lawyer Harriet Wistrich, went to the Appeal Court in March to argue a law change made “coercive and controlling” behaviour a criminal offence.
Ms Wistrich said: "Our argument is that if this evidence is allowed as fresh evidence it renders the murder conviction unsafe therefore that murder conviction should be quashed."

She says appeal judges should reduce the conviction to manslaughter or even demand a retrial.


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