Derek Bentley’s Last Thoughts

        I don’t believe this is happening to me! I have only one hour of my life left before my death sentence is carried out! None of this would have happened if I had not got involved with Chris Craig, and formed a friendship with him and his mates. They were a very bad influence on me. If I’d never met Chris, what would I be doing now?

        I’m outraged that I have received a much more serious, fatal sentence than Chris, who is serving only ten years in prison! Ten years only for murdering someone! It wasn’t me who killed the cop, it was Chris! I never pulled the trigger! I’m completely innocent of murder! As a result of my friendship with Chris, I’m going to die in less than an hour’s time. It’s all because of him!

        I mean, I didn’t even try to run off when I had the chance. For goodness sake, it was I in fact that helped the cops catch Chris. I never meant ‘shoot the cop Chris!’ when I said ‘let him have it Chris!’ I meant ‘let the cop have the gun Chris!’ Those stupid cops took the wrong meaning, and so now I’m stuck here in here ready to die! I didn’t like that judge either; I reckon he was biased. He’ll find out sooner or later that he sentenced me for no reason, and so will others. I was treated very unfairly in that courtroom. Some people will pay for this! Oh yes, they will get hurt, just like they’ve hurt me!

        Where did it all start? When did I make the mistakes that led me here? I remember, it was on the 2nd of November, when I went out and met Chris outside the sweetshop, along with Frank and Norman. I regret going out that night now. I should have stayed home with my family. I should have listened to my parents.

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        I can recall Chris, his gang and me all talking; then Frank and Norman left. Chris and I then caught a bus to Croydon. On the bus, he handed me a knife and a knuckle-duster, which I never even used! I wasn’t planning on using them either! I should not have accepted them from Chris. I should have said ‘no’ right then. I guess I was under peer pressure then. I remember Chris carrying a revolver and a sheath knife. We got off the bus at West Croydon station. Chris’ intention that night was to rob a butcher’s shop, ...

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