UK Politics

Man who killed woman in handbag theft on the run


A man jailed for life for killing a woman as she tried to stop him stealing her handbag has gone on the run.

Mark Woolley, 52, was released from HMP Ranby in Nottinghamshire on licence in November. He has not been seen since a probation meeting in Hackney on 31 January.

He was jailed in 2001 for the murder of costume designer Elizabeth Sherlock as she chased his then-girlfriend Jackie Moorehouse, who stole her bag and jumped into Wolley's car to make a getaway.

Ms Sherlock, 42, had jumped onto the car and was thrown into the air as it was driven away by Woolley – who allegedly smiled as he ran over her body.

She had been travelling to her father's birthday with her husband.

Image:Woolley at the time of the killing

Woolley is described as a white man of slim build, with greying hair and tattoos. He has scars on his forehead, jaw and left ear and is 5ft 4in tall.

The public have been warned not to approach him if seen.

He had scores of previous convictions at the time of the killing, and both he and Moorehouse – who was cleared of murder – stole to fuel their heroin habit.

Judge Michael Hyam, when sentencing Wolley, said he had killed the successful and courageous Ms Sherlock while "eking out a worthless existence by thieving to raise money to buy your next heroin fix".

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He added: "It was a wicked act done without pity and without remorse.

"You were seen to smile. Everyone who saw what you did was sickened by it and everyone who has heard or read of it must be appalled by your lack of human feeling for a woman who had every right to stop you from getting away with her property."

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