A TRIPLE murderer freed on compassionate grounds was today told by the widow of a victim: “I hope you live a long time – and suffer every minute.”
Andrew Walker executed three army colleagues in a payroll robbery in 1985, but has been released to a care home after suffering a stroke.
Private John Thomson was one of the men shot dead by Royal Scots corporal Walker in the raid on Glencorse Barracks, Penicuik, Midlothian.
Private Thomson left behind a 19-year-old widow, Susan, and son, Bruce, who was a toddler at the time and has been left with no memory of his father.
Mrs Thomson, now 47, is furious that Walker has been shown mercy despite showing none to his victims.
She said today: “I hope the bastard lives a long, long time – and suffers each and every minute.
“I am still suffering 26 years, 11 months and 11 days later. No-one ever asks how we feel.”
Mrs Thomson, from Galashiels, is also angry that she only learned about the killer’s release in the media. She asked: “Does no-one ever consider the utter devastation to the families to read this in the newspapers? My son is shattered.”
Private Thomson was forced to drive Walker and his comrades, one of whom had already been shot dead, to a site near a reservoir following the £19,000 raid. Walker shot the second soldier, ordered Private Thomson to get the bodies out of the vehicle and then executed the 25-year-old.
After he was captured, Walker claimed the killings had been carried out by the IRA but he was found guilty and sentenced to 30 years in jail.
In 2002, he had his sentence cut by three years at the Court of Appeal. His lawyers argued that the 30-year sentence was “excessive”.
Following a stroke in Shotts Prison in 2009 he was moved a hospital where he was kept under round-the-clock supervision. Last month, he was moved to a care home, and the Scottish Government confirmed this week he had been released on compassionate grounds.
In an interview two years ago, Mrs Thomson revealed the torment she had suffered since the murder of her husband.
She said: “I was only 19 when Johnny was killed but there’s not a day goes by that I don’t think about it. I couldn’t even go out in the snow for about 14 years after it happened because it just reminded me of that day.”