Ian Brady, a serial killer who murdered five children in the 1960s "Moors Murders" which made him one of Britain's most reviled criminals has died.
He died on Monday, May 15, 2017 at the age of 79. Health officials said Brady died at a high-security psychiatric hospital in northwestern England.
Ian Brady and his lover Myra Hindley became infamous after they carried out a series of gruesome murders between July 1963 and October 1965, in Moors (now known as Greater Manchester) England. Their victims were five children aged between 10 and 17, whose names were given as; Pauline Reade, John Kilbride, Keith Bennett, Lesley Ann Downey and Edward Evans.
Brady and Hindley snatched children off the street, sexually abused them, then tortured them, before they were murdered and buried in shallow graves in Saddleworth Moor. The body of three of the victims were discovered while that of the fourth victim, Keith Bennett, is yet to be found till date.
Hindley died in prison in 2002 of bronchial pneumonia caused by heart disease while Brady died of lung cancer yesterday, May 15th, in Ashworth Hospital, Merseyside. Brady went to his grave having never told where he buried 12-year-old Keith Bennett.
Following the crimes, Brady was apprehended on 7 October 1965 while Hindley was apprehended on 11 October 1965. Both suspects maintained that they were innocent until they both confessed in 1985, twenty years after their arrest. They were both sentenced to life in prison as the death penalty for murder had been abolished just months earlier.
Hindley appealed her sentence several times, claiming she was a reformed woman but she was never released till her death. Brady, on his part, made it clear that he wished never to be released and even begged to be allowed to die. He was declared criminally insane in 1985.
Brady fell ill while in custody, serving three life sentences, and was getting round-the-clock care from cancer nurses before he died in the Merseyside unit. A spokesman for the Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust confirmed the death, saying:
"We can confirm a 79-year-old patient in long term care at Ashworth High Secure Hospital has died after becoming physically unwell."
A source said: “He was allowed to die with dignity, something he failed to offer his poor victims."
The brother of one of Ian Brady's victims John Kilbride revealed last night to The Sun that he felt “numb” when he heard the Moors Murderer had finally joined accomplice Myra Hindley in hell.
Terry Kilbride, 63, said: “It’s a lot to take in. It’s been years and years of anguish and pain for us and the families of the victims. But nothing will change. He’s dead but we will have to still live with the nightmare that he left behind. He’s ruined our lives all these years and he’ll still ruin it even though he’s gone. I feel numb. He was a murderous psychopath. There are no other words to describe what he was. A complete lunatic. Good riddance. I don’t drink, but I’ll have a pint."
Brady had an unstable background, having been raised by foster parents in the toughest slums. He took to crime in his teenage years and a court later sent him to live with his mother and her new husband. There, Brady continued his criminal activities and became an alcoholic. Later, he began to pursue a new interest by building up a library of books on Nazi Germany, sadism and sexual perversion. He met Myra Hindley when she worked as a secretary at the same company in Manchester where he was working as a stores clerk. It was love at first sight and Brady impressed her by reading Mein Kampf in the original German.
On July 12, 1963, Brady told Hindley he wanted to “commit his perfect murder”. He told her to drive a van around the local area while he followed on his motorbike. When he spotted a potential victim he would flash his headlight, and Hindley was to stop and offer that person a lift. The first victim he spotted was a little girl called Marie Ruck but Hindley refused to stop because she recognised her as a near neighbour of her mother. Later they spotted Pauline Reade, 16, a friend of Hindley's younger sister, She got into the car with Hindley because she recognised her and once in the car, Hindley told her to help her locate an expensive glove she had lost on the Moor. Pauline agreed and followed. When they got to the Moor, Hindley introduced Pauline to Brady as her boyfriend who came to help search for the glove. Hindley claimed Brady then took Pauline on to the Moor, where he slashed her throat twice, stuffed the collar of her shirt into one of the cuts created in her throat, and sexually assaulted her. Brady claims that Hindley helped. After the murder, on their way home from the Moor, they passed Pauline's mother, Joan, and her son, Paul, searching the streets for Pauline.
On November 23, 1963, Hindley approached 12-year-old John Kilbride in Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancs, and offered him a lift home. Brady told John he would give him some sherry, but they would have to stop by at the Moor first. He sexually assaulted the boy and attempted to slit his throat with a six-inch serrated blade before fatally strangling him with a piece of string.
On June 16, 1964, Keith Bennett, 12, was on his way to his grandmother’s house when Hindley lured him into her van. She drove to a lay-by on the Moor and Brady took the boy while Hindley kept watch. Brady reappeared 30 minutes later having sexually assaulted and strangled Keith. His body was never found.
On Boxing day, the couple visited a fairground and came across Lesley Ann Downey, 10. They approached her and lured her back to their house, where she was undressed, gagged and forced to pose for photographs before being raped and killed. The following morning Brady and Hindley drove with Downey’s body to Saddleworth Moor, where she was buried, naked with her clothes at her feet, in a shallow grave.
On 6 October 1965 Brady met Edward Evans, a 17-year-old apprentice engineer Edward Evans, at Manchester Central railway station. He invited him to his home where Brady beat him to death with an axe. The murders ended only after they were arrested and then jailed for life for three murders in 1966. Later, over 20 years after their arrest, they confessed to two more murders.
At the Moors Murders trial, they played the tape Ian Brady made of the screams of Lesley Anne Downey as she begged for her life and called for her mummy. In court, Brady was asked why he made two copies of that tape, which was found in the left luggage locker at Manchester railway station. Brady replied:
"Because it was interesting and unusual."
In 1985, Brady was transferred from jail to Ashworth. For years, he was placed on suicide watch and in 1999, he went on hunger strike in protest at being declared insane. Since then he has been kept alive by being force-fed a liquid diet by nasal tube. In 2013, Brady went before a mental health tribune in which he claimed he was no longer a paranoid schizophrenic and should be moved to a jail in his native Scotland and allowed to die. He lost the ruling and was returned to Ashworth.
Brady made his deteriorating health known to a friend of his in a letter in which he revealed that he was suffering a lung and chest condition.
"I’m still bedridden and have been for over two years," he wrote in the letter. "It is terminal."
With Brady's death, hopes of ever finding the body of Keith Bennett dwindles. Brian Masters, a criminologist, revealed that Brady refused to reveal to the victim's family where their son was buried because he simply did not care. He said that Brady was the kind of person who never cared about anyone else or their feelings, except himself, and he was that way even up till his death.