Ashley King spent 14 years in prison for murder, but his conviction was quashed by the Court of Appeal when his confession was deemed unsafe due to King’s ‘excessive compliance and suggestibility’.
The Daily Telegraph, 11/12/99
“A “vulnerable” man who served 14 years in jail for murder was cleared and freed yesterday when the Court of Appeal accepted that his confessions to the police could not be relied on.
Ashley King, 34, was convicted in July 1986 of killing Margaret Greenwood, 58, who was bludgeoned to death at her home in Houghton-le-Spring, Tyne and Wear.
Three appeal judges quashed the conviction as “unsafe” after hearing fresh evidence from Olive Tunstall, a psychologist, that King had a low IQ bordering on mental incapacity and displayed signs of being “excessively compliant and suggestible”. Ms Tunstall’s branch of psychology was an “embryonic science” at the time of the trial.
The Times, 11/12/99
A man who served 14 years in prison for murder walked free from the Court of Appeal yesterday after judges accepted that his confessions could not be relied upon.
Ashley King’s murder conviction was quashed in the light of new evidence showing that he had a low IQ and bordered on mental incapacity. Mr King, 34, is expected to receive compensation of at least £210,000.
The court was told that he was a vulnerable young man who showed signs of being “excessively compliant and suggestible”.
The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Bingham of Cornhill, said that if the trial jury had heard this evidence it would have been “very hesitant” to convict Mr King, from Houghton-le-Spring, Tyne and Wear.
Mr King was convicted in July 1986 of killing Margaret Greenwood, 58, at her bungalow in Houghton-le-Spring.