EPUB Ø A Portrait of a Child Who Murdered ï Gitta Sereny

In December 1968 two girls who lived next door to each other Mary aged eleven and Norma thirteen stood before a criminal court in Newcastle accused of strangling two little boys; Martin Brown four years old and Brian Howe threeNorma was acuitted Mary Bell the younger but infinitely sophisticated and cooler of the two was foun In the summer of 1968 the murders of two toddlers shocked Newcastle in England But they were in for a bigger shock very soon The murderer was a little girl of 11 years Mary Bell Gitta Sereny was a journalist covering the case and she immediately got interested in this child who should not be a killer After all children are supposed to be innocent What could possibly have driven Mary to kill? Sereny contends that some children are not naturally bad Instead it's their environment that's producing violence in them She also makes a really brilliant point that most of this abuse is concocted in families and it is high time that families should not be held as a sacred cow at the expense of the welfare of children Oh my god I agree so much I've never heard anyone say this so clearly before Everyone seems reluctant to separate mother and child but in this case it would have been best for both of themThe author covers the incidents the investigation the trial and a bit of the background of Mary Bell's family in the book Written only a few years after the trial Sereny is still fresh with the trauma of the incident and is able to take the reader back in time to feel the horror of those days It does not cover information that Bell as an adult has come out with that's in another book by Sereny A few things stand out for me after reading this book Norma Bell was probably guilty How is it possible that she was not? As much as I try to find ways to exonerate her she just looms in the background impossible to ignore She was not the instigator but she took part I suppose that the entire system found this case so distasteful that they were happy to ignore Norma who didn't stand out in their face like Mary did But this prevented her from getting a chance to turn her life around like Mary did In fact Sereny does point out that Norma's life went downhill and her obsession with the murders never ended I found it so intensely creepy that she offered to take a toddler for a walk just a few days after the trial I found it confusing why Norma was allowed to play with Mary after Mary was caught red handed throttling Norma's younger sister Susan Norma's father sent her off and refused to allow Susan to play with Mary any But why allow Norma then? This makes no sense to me Why was Mary's home life never investigated? It is obvious that she was abused by her mother Her entire family knew that Betty Bell had tried to murder her daughter four times But they just sat on their hands and did nothing at all What kind of jerks are these? They should all have been prosecuted Sereny writes well and brings out the salient points The book is uite interesting and explores different relevant themes At the end is tacked on an article about the James Bugler case which I found rather unnecessary Just because they were both child killers doesn't mean it should be included in a book about Mary Bell The article was rather interesting but if you knew nothing about the case then it would be completely useless because Sereny just goes on to discuss the family backgrounds of the boys involved without saying much about the case itself Today Mary is rehabilitated and has not re offended It's incredible what can be done with faulty humans with therapy and support Mary was on her way to becoming a serial killer as a child Her being caught and detained saved other lives and her own Anyone interested in Mary Bell should probably also read the next book that came out in the 90s Cries Unheard In that one the adult and rehabilitated Mary talks about her childhood problems and offers some further perspective

PDF The Case of Mary Bell

The Case of Mary Bell A Portrait of a Child Who MurderedD guilty of manslaughter She evaded being branded as a murderer due to what the court ruled as 'diminished responsibility' but she was sentenced to 'detention' for lifeStep by step Gitta Sereny pieces together a gripping and rare study of a horrifying crime; the murders the events surrounding them the alternately bizzare and I grew up in Newcastle the city where Mary Bell committed her crimes in the 1980s and as such was always aware of this case and the folklore built up around it in a city that won't forget these awful crimes As such I was very kean to read The Case of Mary Bell to understand of the truth behind the case and perhaps gain some insight as to how on earth an 11 year old girl comes to murder two innocent little boys The book has not disappointed me at allSereny has produces a fascinating account of the case She is an excellent writer and as a conseuence the book is very readable and her theories clear and easy to follow Sereny was present throughout Mary's trial and subseuently visited Mary in her detention centre She has also talked to the the vast majority of the parties involved in the case from the police to the families of both perpetrator and victims Her research was clearly very thorough her presentation of events is clear and it would seem very accurate Sereny's examination of Mary's character and possible motivations is fascinating and she does not attempt to either condemn her as evil or diminish her responsibility for her crimes Her opinions on Mary and her co defendent Norma Bell no relation to Mary are interesting well argued and fair The examination of the relationship between Mary and Norma was in my opinion particularly interesting as it was key to the case It was fascinating to read how such a young child could so manipulate an older girl and indeed the adults around her for her own ends At the time this book was originally written the 1970s not much was really known about Mary's background but Sereny has gathered as much information as she could and produces some good reasoning on what made Mary kill as a result Her family is looked into in depth at least as much as the family was willing to reveal at the time The first hand information they provide is very valuable in understanding the whole case Interviews with those in the community as a whole also provide a fascinating insight into how these crimes affected a whole community for many years and still affects it I believe todaySereny also discusses the way the justice system treats children who kill and again produces some interesting thoughts on this While it is clear Sereny has sympathy with Mary and Norma and does not like the way the system treats such children her analysis is both fair and constructive Her examination of the trial process is thorough and I also found it fascinating to see how children are interviewed by the police in such mattersThe book though written some time ago is still highly relevant today in our increasingly violent and disillusioned society In this new edition Sereny has added a short but interesting and thought provoking section on the Bulger case from the 1990s which presents some interesting theories and also shows how little has changed in the years between the two cases both in society as a whole and the attitude towards such children and also in the justice system Indeed it seems little has changed even today and another such killer could well be in the making now Overall this is an excellent and important text in our modern culture and a must for those interested in true crime and psychology

Gitta Sereny ï A Portrait of a Child Who Murdered KINDLE

PDF Â BOOK The Case of Mary Bell Í GITTA SERENY Í In December 1968 two girls who lived next door to each other Mary aged eleven and Norma thirteen stood before a criminal court in Newcastle accused of strangling two little boys; Martin Brown four years old and Brian Howe threeNorma was acuitted Mary Bell the younger but infNonchalant behaviour of the two girls their brazen offers to help the distraught families of the dead boys the police work that led to their apprehension and finally the trial itself What emerges from this extraordinary case is the inability of society to anticipate such events and to take adeuate steps once disaster has stru December 1968 two girls aged eleven and thirteen are accused of strangling two little boys four year old Martin Brown and three year old Brian Howe The oldest girl Norma is acuitted but the younger and advanced Mary Bell is found guilty of manslaughter Investigative journalist Gitta Sereny tells the story of this terrible crime charting the background lead up to the murders the trial and the aftermathI like to think I remember this case though at the time I would only have been about seven years old However with the murders occurring only a few miles from my hometown the case was one of those that sticks in my memory Gita Sereny digs into the background of the families involved highlighting the social and familial influences on Mary Bell and her parents In detailed scenes including police reports witness statements and court documents the author unpicks the minutiae of Bell’s life especially the influence of the mother whose personal history and actions following the court case shine an intriguing light on the caseWhat is most interesting is the difference in the way crimes of this type are handled now and how those involved are dealt with At the time suitable custodial arrangements did not exist for very young children and the authorities found themselves in a difficult position in finding a suitable ‘prison’ for Mary More than fifty years on the name Mary Bell still evokes strong feelings but what comes across most clearly in this book is the hopelessness of Mary’s situation and perhaps the inevitability of such tragic eventsIncluded with this edition is Sereny’s account of the James Bulger murder and the police investigation A troubling and thoughtful book that harks back to a time when the concept of a child killing another child was unheard of in this country