I was delighted to receive a clear and informative letter (uploaded to this blog) just before X-mas from Michael Rogers who I visited at HMP Isle of Wight in Summer 2016. He has since moved ‘home’ to HMP Swaleside on Sheerness where understaffing brings a lot of time locked up in the cell.
I wrote earlier about the backgrounds of the Norwich Three:
I asked Michael to provide a biography of his life which I have now uploaded to this blog entry with some key names redacted.
What strikes me is the humbleness and ordinariness of Michael’s background. Caring for his father who was wheel-chair bound already when Michael was born. Learning a trade. Driving buses. A lot of cycling. Getting spotted by a ‘broody’ woman. Getting married. Two girls. Separation.
This could be anybody’s life story. No ‘Romeo’. No serial adulterer. A total of three relationships.
No conflict with the law. Not until that 18 months ill-fated relationship. One accident affecting a child when trying to move a TV. One incident involving two children with questionable ‘chastisement’. Another incident – ‘smacking’? The circumstances of the ‘Caution’ issued for these incidents bizarre and chilling. His partner at the time went with her children for a long weekend to visit a friend who got agitated – probably over-interpreting what Michael’s partner said about their relationship. His partner called the Police as her friend refused to let her leave with her children! A police officer asked Michael to sit with him in his car ‘for a chat’. The opening line was reportedly: ‘Sometimes we arrest the wrong person’. Michael felt the ‘red mist’ rising inside, did not listen any further and did not say anything. Got ‘arrested’ and after a night in a cell only wanted to get away from this godforsaken region as quickly as possible. So accepted a ‘police caution’.
More conflict with the law when THAT letter arrived. He contacted a solicitor – in spite of never meeting him before and knowing nothing about the circumstances she immediately grasped the motivation of the people behind the letter:
‘This looks like a plan to get the kids off the Mum’.
The cowards who had sent the letter refused to answer calls. No police interview investigation. Just unproven allegations. Contact with his own two daughters cut (who he is missing terribly).
His spineless employer (Stagecoach) immediately engineered a dismissal. Other jobs followed where he was competent, reliable and well-liked.
The ludicrous court case saga continued.
Michael explained to me the ‘twirling game’ he used to play with some of the children – ostensibly for sexual gratification. He told me that he sometimes carried a tired child on the neck when on an excursion. Allegations were made that he had carried a girl with her skirt over his eyes – ostensibly to eye up the girl’s intimate parts. Michael explained to me: Would it not have been rather difficult to walk like that without falling over? Would not members of the public intervene if seeing such a ‘spectacular’ in public places? Sadly it sounds like the kind of concoction that tends to be fabricated to further lucrative ‘Child in Care’ prospects.
The last sentences in the letter emphasise that his intimate partners were adult women. The reason for this is that horrific allegations of child sexual abuse were made against the Norwich Three. I believe that there is no truth to these allegations, that some of the darkest ‘Child Smuggling’ forces in the UK are behind the travesty, and that the convictions are extremely unsafe.
In the recent letter I appreciate the observations regarding the first Psychiatrist: ‘apprentice like’, ‘amateurish’. Odd behaviour of the second Psychiatrist. The saga about the pictures on the mobile. AFTER the trial two burly ‘police officers’ interrogate him in prison about the Chiropractor. First shoot (i.e. pronounce guilty) – then investigate? Is this the Norwich way? I think it is a no good way!
I will talk about these and other shenanigans at the
Mental Capacity Act 2005 Conference – A Decade On, What’s Right & What’s Wrongs
in Norwich on 30th March 2017 organised by Kate Blake at the Edit Ellen Foundation:
See you there!?!