On the Pulse: Does the Philpotts’ punishment fit their crime?


Michael Philpott, 56, was convicted of manslaughter and told he will serve a minimum of 15 years in prison.


By Laura Mitchell

A father sentenced for killing six of his 17 children in a fire at his Derby house was jailed for life at Nottingham Crown Court yesterday.

Michael Philpott, 56, was convicted of manslaughter and told he will serve a minimum of 15 years in prison – the equivalent of two and a half years for each child.

His wife Mairead Philpott, 32, and friend Paul Mosley, 46, who assisted in the deadly plot to set fire to18 Victory Road, were told they would serve half of their 17-year sentences.

All three are guilty of six counts of manslaughter for causing the deaths of Jade Philpott, 10, and her brothers John, nine, Jack, eight, Jesse, six, Jayden, five, and Duwayne, 13 at their home on May 11 last year.

Judge Mrs Justice Thirlwall said Mr Philpott was the driving force behind the shockingly dangerous enterprise, describing him as a disturbingly dangerous man with no moral compass.

People in Wimbledon have been giving their opinions on the severity of Michael Philpott’s sentence.

Some people feel he should spend the rest of his life in prison as a result of the crimes he has committed.

Marcus Lowe, 39, said “It’s not enough he should stay in there for the rest of his life. It is six kids.  You can’t put an amount of time on six kids’ lives. They didn’t even get a chance.”

Adrian Guthire, 36, said: “The sentence should be life for what they did to those children, and life should mean life.”

Others feel that his sentence should be extended and he should not be let out until he is old enough not to be a threat to society.

“The sentence for the wife (Mairead Philpott) seems right but I don’t think it’s enough for him.  I think 30 years would be fair.  Yes, 30-40 years – then he wouldn’t be much of a threat,” said one man.

Aron Jonathon, 30, of Mitcham said: “If it had been a deliberate act it should have been more.”

One woman felt that the length of his sentence wasn’t that important as he will still have to live with consequences of his actions outside of prison, if he is released after 15 years.

“I think it is s**t (the sentence), but when he gets out he will be hated by everyone and have to live with the consequences,” she said.

Cleopatra C. Rickets, 19, who works in Wimbledon said: “I think she (Mairead Philpott) should get the same as him. She knew what was happening and she should take responsibility. Everyone would say they are a victim but she knew what was happening and didn’t stop it.”

Another man felt that the sentence was fair as the death of the children was not deliberate.

Richard Joslin, of Wimbledon, said: “I think it’s enough because it’s manslaughter. It’s awful but he didn’t mean to do it. He didn’t actually mean to kill his children.”

Photo courtesy of itnnews via YouTube, with thanks. 

Follow us @SW_Londoner

Related Articles