Shopkeeper free of charges for killing one of four armed gangsters

Cecil Coley – my hero

A shopkeeper who stabbed a 30-year-old intruder to death has been told he will not be charged with any offence.

Cecil Coley stabbed Gary Mullings, 30 – who was attempting to rob his flower shop in Old Trafford, Greater Manchester – in July. The 72-year-old was arrested on suspicion of murder after Mullings was pronounced dead in hospital…

Nathan Walters, 26, of Salford, Joseph Mullings, 25, of Liverpool and 19-year-old Kyle Mullings, of no fixed address, have been charged with robbery and will appear at Manchester crown court in October.

Coley, who was injured during the incident, was questioned by detectives after his release from hospital. He had been playing cards with a 60-year-old friend, who was also injured, at the time of the incident.

Police said a number of men had tried to rob the shop and that a gun had been found at the scene…

Nazir Afzal, the chief crown prosecutor for the north-west area, said he was satisfied that Coley was “acting in reasonable self-defence at the time”.

He said he had considered all the evidence gathered by Greater Manchester police and decided Coley should not be prosecuted for any offence over the death of Gary Mullings.

It is difficult to envisage a more frightening set of circumstances than these,” he said. “Four men, armed with guns and a knife, forced their way into the shop as Mr Coley was locking up.

“Mr Coley received a number of injuries, including a serious facial injury, and his friend was knocked unconscious. At some point in the incident, one of the guns, a blank firing pistol, was fired.”

The sentence for armed robbery, for committing a crime of violence, life-threatening to the victim – should be life. Warehouse the bastards until and unless a jury of warders decides that any sort of rehabilitation has taken place.

Why turn unrepentant scum back into the streets because some particular metric has been reached? Penal systems can be managed to reduce recidivism while maintaining the safety of a law abiding populace at the same time.

Yes – we do a lousy job at that here in the United States and I doubt the UK is much better. That still doesn’t justify diminishing public safety because all the other institutions failed similarly.

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