Mum's fury at killer's TV show

EXCLUSIVEBy Annie DavidsonA MOTHER has told of her disgust after her daughter's killer was allowed to defend herself in a television documentary.Heather Knight said she was “shocked and disgusted” that Kerry Bauer had been allowed to appear in an ITV fly-on-the-wall programme, The Real Bad Girls.

EXCLUSIVE

By Annie Davidson

A MOTHER has told of her disgust after her daughter's killer was allowed to defend herself in a television documentary.

Heather Knight said she was “shocked and disgusted” that Kerry Bauer had been allowed to appear in an ITV fly-on-the-wall programme, The Real Bad Girls.


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The 21-year-old was followed by a camera crew during her trial for the murder of Miss Knight's 17-year-old daughter, Debra Carne.

The episode featuring Bauer - who was found guilty of murder, sentenced to life imprisonment and will not be considered for parole until 2019 - will be shown on ITV at 10pm tomorrow.

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Miss Carne was beaten and asphyxiated before being doused in petrol and set alight after Bauer and three friends hatched a plot to ambush her.

She was lured to a lonely country lane near her Sible Hedingham home, where she was set upon by Bauer and Emma Last, who both lived at the Foyer hostel in Braintree.

The pair, who had never met Miss Carne, had plotted revenge after their friend Nicole Hollinshead claimed she had been interfering with her relationship with her boyfriend, Steven Wood.

Last, 18, admitted murder and was ordered to serve at least 20 years of a life sentence before applying for parole.

Hollinshead, 20, from, Halstead, was found guilty of conspiracy to inflict grievous bodily harm and jailed for five years. She was cleared of murder and manslaughter.

Wood, 24, of Parker Way, Halstead, was jailed for eight years after being found guilty of manslaughter, but cleared of murder.

The six-week trial was held at Chelmsford Crown Court in April this year and the documentary shows Bauer attending her trial and returning to Bullwood Hall Prison in south Essex every evening.

The day before giving evidence in her defence, Bauer told the documentary her “whole life depends on how I perform in the witness box”.

The mother-of-one remained adamant she was not a murderer and said she was “disgusted” with herself for what had happened the night of Miss Carne's death.

“The fact that it is not just the victim who suffers, it is the family, the friends, just the loved ones, the fact that her mum has had most precious thing in her life taken away from her. It is hard. It has touched so many people's lives,” she said.

Bauer compared giving evidence to the first time she appeared in a school play, calling it “the most terrifying experience you can go through”.

But Miss Knight, of Swan Court, Sible Hedingham, broke down in tears as she said: “If she thinks that is bad, what did she think she was doing to Debra on that night? Did she think that was good?

“I am disgusted. She is right that a precious thing has been taken away and I would like to believe she meant that, but I do not believe it is from the heart.

“In court, she showed no feeling whatsoever, absolutely nothing, and she did not show any remorse.

“If I had done such a hideous thing to someone, I could not live with myself. There is no way I could handle it. Debra was so young, she was just a baby. I absolutely idolised her.”

The documentary shows photographs of Bauer's daughter, who was born when she was on remand in Holloway Prison. The baby is now being raised by Bauer's parents and, according to her, was “doing really well”.

Bauer also told the documentary that having a child taken away was the “worst thing possible” that could happen to anyone. “For months afterwards I felt like something was missing,” she said.

But Miss Knight responded: “Big deal. She can see her child and have visiting rights.

“She will miss teething, crawling, first steps and things like that, but I will miss seeing my daughter grow up, get married and have children.”

Miss Knight added that after watching the first episode of the documentary, she felt the prison was “like a holiday camp”.

She said: “There are some really bad people in there and they are living a life of luxury.”

The Real Bad Girls shows Bauer waiting for the jury to return its verdict and charts her reaction after being convicted, sentenced and transferred to Holloway Prison.

Her tariff was set at 18 years and she will not be considered for parole until 2019, when her daughter will be aged 16.

Appearing to hold back tears, Bauer said: “It is a scary thought that this is going to be my life for the rest of the next 15 years, but I'm used to it so I'm just going to get on with it all.”

A spokesman for ITV said last night: “This week's episode of The Real Bad Girls sets out to show what life is like for a remand prisoner in Bullwood Hall as she attends her trial on a daily basis.

“It in no way glamorises the horrific crime of which Kerry was accused and reports the facts of the judge's directions to the jury and the eventual outcome of the trial in a matter of fact way.

“Kerry doesn't talk about the crime and in the programme she does express her remorse for her involvement in it.”

annie.davidson@eadt.co.uk

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