A violent offender serving a life sentence for murder is on the run after fleeing an open prison in Lancashire.
Thomas Parkinson, 31, formerly of Acacia Street, Preston, is being hunted by police after absconding from HMP Kirkham on Wednesday, April 24.
But police came under fire after waiting almost a week to warn the public – saying he was potentially violent and should not be approached.
Parkinson was sentenced to life in prison in 2007 after stabbing a 23-year-old man to death at a house party in Preston.
Readers were quick to comment online after police appealed to help track him down.
These are a selection of your views on housing violent criminals at the minimum security prison.
So this is a dangerous person who should not be approached. In a prison where anyone can just walk out? Am I missing something?
When is our overpaid and underworked Police and Crime Commissioner going to demand an inquiry in to the operation of Kirkham ‘prison’, it’s clearly not fit for purpose?
If we have to be warned not to approach someone who is deemed violent, then he should not be in an open prison or even being considered for release.
The police do their best to get these violent criminals locked up, only for the prison service management to do their best to let them go. Then tell us they are not safe to approach.
The system needs a total overhaul.
The public have a right to be kept safe, especially from convicted murderers.
Kirkham does a great job for the thousands who have adhered to the rules and have been integrated back into society. Unfortunately a few prove they are not ready and need to go back to closed conditions.
Dangerous person in open prison doesn’t make sense to me!? And he absconded a week ago? It doesn’t bear thinking about what he could have done to people who hadn’t been warned for so long!
Why was he in an open prison? He escaped a week ago and we are only just being warned!?
Life in prison and he’s in open prison? That’s not a life sentence is it. Our justice system is a joke.
Life should mean life. And to wait a week before letting the public know!?
Why on earth are you going to have a dangerous prisoner in an open prison – and not alert anyone he escaped for a week?
First of all why was he in an open prison and secondly, why have they waited a week to make the public aware there is a murderer running around?
Waited a week before telling public? Someone needs to be held to account.
Why is a dangerous murderer serving a life sentence in an open prison? I don’t know the rules but that doesn’t sound sensible.
The mind boggles.
Katy Louise Kelsall