July 2009

The father of a schoolgirl murdered by a paedophile hanged himself after discovering her killer could be released back to an address near him.

Lewis Poole-Warren, 42, committed suicide because he could not face seeing ‘monster’ Keith Collard, it was claimed today.

His stepdaughter Katrina Monk, 12, was snatched yards from her home in 1993 as she returned from school.

Her body was found the next day in an alleyway close to her home. Her wrists and ankles were bound and a plastic bag had been put over her head and taped up.

Neighbour Keith Collard, then 24, a loner with an obsession for pornography, was arrested the following day.

It emerged that Collard had dragged her into his garden shed at gunpoint before molesting her, suffocating her and dumping the body in an alleyway where it was found.

Today Katrina’s mother Valerie Monk, who went on to have two daughters with Mr Poole-Warren, said he couldn’t cope with the fact that Collard could be released back to the area.

The 50-year-old, said they had recently found out Collard, who was sentenced to life imprisonment at the Old Bailey in December 1993, had a parole board hearing in December this year.

She said: ‘We had been trying to find out about what was happening with Keith Collard so we contacted the parole board.

‘They told us Collard has a hearing on December 22 this year to decide if he should have immediate parole or whether he should be sent to an open prison. Then if he is a good boy for six months he will be released.

‘Lewis and I were shocked. And to make it worse Collard put an Enfield address down as his return address and it was too much for Lewis.

‘When he found out he was so furious he punched a wall, shattering his hand. As he’s a carpenter he couldn’t work and had to sign on. He just couldn’t cope – before he killed himself he hadn’t worked for several weeks.’

Tragically Katrina’s two brothers, Jason and Danny, who Lewis trained to be kitchen fitters, are now also dead.

Jason died of tuberculosis in December 2003 aged 28 and Danny succumbed to leukaemia in October 2007 aged 30.

Ms Monk added: ‘Hearing Collard could be out soon brought everything back for Lewis. After Katrina was found, suspicion immediately fell on him as her step-father.

‘Lewis was devastated when police searched the house as he loved her like his own and would never hurt her.

‘Lewis sat by my side throughout the court case in 1993, but after he struggled to cope and we split up for a while.

‘We then married and had two daughters, Michaela, 12, and Shannon, nine. Lewis doted on them and when we split up in 2003 he saw them regularly.’

Ms Monk said she saw Mr Poole-Warren the day before he hanged himself when she went to pick up the girls.

She said: ‘He’d had the girls for the weekend and he seemed in good spirits.

‘I knew he was struggling with the news about Collard but we had set up a petition to fight it.

‘It came as such a shock and the girls are beside themselves with grief – they haven’t been able to cope with school.

‘Keith Collard should never be allowed out for what he did to our little girl, he’s a monster. Lewis just couldn’t stand the thought of him being released.’

via Father of murdered girl commits suicide after learning paedophile killer could be released and move near him | Mail Online.