Former partner of Babes in the Wood killer fails in appeal bid

Jennie Johnson was given a six-year prison sentence in May 2021 after jurors heard that she had lied at Russell Bishop’s original 1987 trial.

22 June 2022

The former partner of Babes in the Wood killer Russell Bishop has failed in an appeal bid after being convicted of perjury.

Bishop, who died in January 2022 aged 55, was jailed in 2018 for a minimum of 36 years after being convicted of the murders of Nicola Fellows and Karen Hadaway, who were both nine when they died in 1986.

He had been cleared of their murders at an earlier trial in 1987.

Jennie Johnson was given a six-year prison sentence in May 2021 after a judge and jury heard that she had lied at Bishop’s original 1987 trial.

Russell Bishop death
Babes in the Wood killer Russell Bishop was jailed in 2018 for a minimum of 36 years but died in hospital in January 2022 (Sussex Police/PA)

On Wednesday, three judges dismissed the 56-year-old’s appeal bid by after considering arguments at a recent Court of Appeal hearing in London.

Lord Justice Fulford, Mrs Justice Cutts and Mr Justice Henshaw refused to give Johnson the go-ahead to challenge her conviction and sentence.

Bishop was 20 when he sexually assaulted and strangled Karen and Nicola in a woodland den in Brighton, East Sussex, in October 1986, judges heard.

He was cleared of their murders in December 1987, but within three years went on to kidnap, molest and throttle a seven-year-old girl.

While serving life for attempted murder, Bishop was ordered to face a fresh trial under the double jeopardy law, following a DNA breakthrough.

Jurors convicted Bishop, following a 2018 trial at the Old Bailey, on the 31st anniversary of his acquittal.

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