|16 Nov 1989
|The Old Bailey
|Mr Justice Calvert-Smith
Billy Dunlop had a very disturbed childhood, in and out of care, and in trouble with the police at an early age.
August 1989, Julie, who had only been married a few years separated from her husband, she lived on her own with 3-year-old son Kevin, she was known to have had several sexual partners, including a relationship with Billy Dunlop.
15th November 1989, Billy Dunlop had been at a strip-show at Billington ruby club, drinking heavily, Dunlop got involved in a fight, a fight so severe it left the other man in hospital. After this he originally claimed he went to a friends house, but, he went to Julie's house, whom he had previously had sex with the week before.
No one knows what really happened, but it is suspected she turned down his sexual advances, and by his own admission years later she laughed at him because of the injuries to his face following the fight. He then strangled her, and smothered her with a pillow.
16th November 1989, Julie had been out at work, on a night shift delivering pizza around Teeside, her son was with his grandparents. Later that morning she was due in court for a separation hearing, her mother, Ann Ming, called her at 7:30am, but got no reply.
single mother Julie Hogg, aged-22, lived at 27, Grange Ave, Billingham, County Durham, when her mother got no response she drove to the house with Julies brother, there was no answer, so they broke into the house. They were quite shocked to see how tidy the house was, as Julie was known to be a bit untidy, Julies mother was shocked to find that even the bed had been made, something Julie never did. Ann Ming called the police, who initially said that Julie could be anywhere, thy would not take any action at this stage. Julies parents continued calling the police over the coming days, concerned that Julie would not just vanish of her own accord.
20th November 1989, Police decide to conduct a search of Julies house. After two days searching police informed Julies mum, Ann, that there was nothing found in the house, one policeman went as far as saying "I can guarantee nothing untoward has happened in that house". Julie was listed as a missing person by police.
February 1990, police returned the keys of the house to Julies husband Andrew, he intended to move back in with son Kevin. But when entering the house there was an awful smell, Andrew called Julies mum, Ann, for advice, she came round and checked the bathroom where the smell was coming from. She accidentally knocked the bath panel. Julie Hogg's body was discovered under the bathtub by by her own mother.
Julie was naked and had been sexually mutilated, a weapon of some kind having been inserted into her vagina, the body was so badly decomposed that an exact cause of death could not be established.
Police began to hunt for the killer, several suspects were initially questioned by police, including Julie's former boyfriend Billy Dunlop. When questioned by police about that night Dunlop claimed that after the rugby club he went to visit a friend that lived in a nearby street, however, witness statements did not agree with this, police arrested and charged Dunlop with Julie Hoggs murder, and remanded him to Durham prison.
May 1991, Dunlop stands trial at Newcastle Crown Court. The prosecution case seemed strong, a key bit of evidence was Julie's house keys, which had been found under Dunlops' floorboards, and had his fingerprints on, also semen on the blanket by Julie's body was his. As Dunlop and Julie had indeed been in a relationship, and had had sex previously, Dunlop and his defense team were able to explain away the prosecution claims.
The jury were unable to reach a verdict, the judge ordered a re-trial.
At the re-trial the jury again failed to reach a verdict, Dunlop was formally acquitted of murdering Julie Hogg, and walked free.
One person was not looking forward to his release, after 20-months in custody, was his common-law wife, and mother of his children, Jaine Wadsworth. Dunlop went back to his old ways of drinking heavily. On one night he came home very drunk and threatened her, he held her up against a wall with his hand around her neck, he threatened to kill her saying "i'll do it, i've done it before, and I got away with it". Eventually Jaine could take no more of the beatings and violence, and left him. Dunlop tracked her down and asked to see the children. That evening he sexually assaulted her, and then produced a knife, Jaine believed she was about to die, but one of the children started crying which distracted him. She then broke all ties with Dunlop, going to court to get sole custody of the children, she moved and started a new life.
Dunlop spotted a previous girlfriend out with her new boyfriend, that night he crept into their house and beat the man with a bat multiple times, fracturing his skull and breaking every bone in his face, Dunlop only stopped when the bat broke, the man had to have his face rebuilt with metal plates. He thew turned on the woman stabbing her repeatedly with a BBQ fork seven times.
Dunlop was charged with attempted murder, but admitted to the lesser offense of GBH, he was jailed for 7-years.
1999, while serving his sentence for attacking a previous girlfriend and her boyfriend, Dunlop bragged to a prison guard that he had in fact murdered Julie Hogg, but wouldn't go to prison for it because of the UK's double jeopardy laws. The prison guard had been fitted with a secret recording device to capture Dunlop talking.
Dunlop was taken to Stockton police station, and openly confessed to killing Julie to police detectives. Police charged Dunlop with two counts of perjury, lying in court, one for each of the court appearances. At court he was sentenced to serve 6-years in prison for perjury.
2005, after campaigns run by Julie Hogg's mother, Ann Ming, the UK's double jeopardy laws that had existed for over 800-years were scrapped. The law had meant that an individual could not be charged with the same crime twice.
The law that prevented an acquitted person being tried again for the same offence was changed, when a provision in the Criminal Justice Act 2003 came into force. Where there is "new and compelling evidence" pointing to the guilt of a former defendant, the Court of Appeal may quash an acquittal, and order a retrial.
6th October 2006, Dunlop admitted to the murder of Julie Hogg in 1989, at The Old Bailey, and was convicted and sentenced to life in prison, to serve a minimum 17-years. He is eligible for parole in October 2023.
Wednesday 12th June 2019, Dunlop had applied to be moved to an open prison. This is considered a significant step to being released, but, he has had his application rejected.
He is now unable to apply again for 12-months.
June 2022, A spokesperson for the Parole Board said: "We can confirm the parole review of William Dunlop has been referred to the Parole Board by the Secretary of State for Justice and is following standard processes. A hearing has taken place but the decision has been adjourned for some further information, this has been scheduled for August 2022.
October 2022, a suggested move to an open prison for Dunlop was refused.
The Ministry of Justice said his move to an open prison had been rejected "in the interest of public protection".