Michael Stone

Micheal Stone
Kill Total2
Kill PlaceKent
Kill Date9 July 1996
VictimLin   - 45
Megan - 6

One of five children, Stone was born in Tunbridge Wells.  He had a troubled childhood, with his parents separating and his mother marrying four times. He was placed into a care home where he was then abused.
Stone's police record dates back to the age of 12, when he became involved in shoplifting and burglary which continued into adulthood.
Once he left the care system Stone began using heroin. Stone served three prison sentences in the 1980s for violent offences

9th July 1996, Stone  attacked and killed Dr Lin Russell, 45, and her 6-year-old daughter  Megan, as they walked home from a swimming gala along a country lane in Chillenden, near Canterbury.
The eldest daughter, Josie, aged-9, was also battered and left for dead but she survived and made a miraculous recovery, the family's pet dog, Lucy, was also killed.
The family had passed Stone's car, which was parked in the lane, when he got out wielding a claw hammer and demanded money. Dr Russell said they did not have any and offered to go home and get some.
But Stone said "No", tied them up and bludgeoned Dr Russell and Megan to death with the hammer. Josie was urged by her mother to run home and get help but she was caught, blindfolded with strips of towel taken from her swimming bag and tied to a tree. Her mother was also blindfolded. Josie was then attacked and passed out. Her injuries were so severe it was not until the next year that she could recount the events to police. She still had difficulty speaking and understanding speech.

16th July 1997 - Michael stone from Gillingham in Kent is arrested, on an unrelated crime, and held in Canterbury Jail.

6th October 1998 Michael Stone stands trial at Maidstone Crown Court, charged with the murder of Dr. Lin Russell and 6-year-old Megan Russell, as well as the attempted murder of Josie Russell.

23rd October 1998 - after nearly 15-hours of deliberation, the jury, by a 10-2 majority, finds Stone guilty on all three counts, he is given three life sentences. 

6th November 1998 Stone's defence lodged an appeal against his conviction, stating that they were hopeful of being granted "Leave to appeal".

16th January 2001 the court of appeal grants Stone the right to appeal, after one of the main prosecution witness's admits he lied in the first trial.

6th February 2001 the court of appeal rules that the appeal "Must Succeed", and on 8th February, quashed Michael Stone's conviction, immediately ordering a new trial.

5th September 2001, The second trial started  at Nottingham Crown court.

4th October 2001, the jury again found stone guilty on two counts of murder and one of attempted murder.

The prosecution at the first trial was based mainly on the evidence of Barry Thompson, who later admitted he had made the story up. At the second trial the evidence against Stone was from an "alleged" confession he shouted through the wall to a prisoner in the next cell. There was never any forensic evidence to link Stone to the case. 

19th January 2005 - A new appeal heard in the high court in London found no grounds for the appeal, Stone was returned to prison.

21 December 2006, a High Court judge has decided that Stone should spent at least 25 years in prison before being considered for parole. This means that he is likely to remain in prison until 2023 when he will be 63 years old.

September 2007 it was announced that The Criminal Cases Review Commission  is assessing if there is "any new evidence or anything to cast doubt on the safety of Stone's convictions".

8th December 2011, Stone's application for his case to be referred back to the Court of Appeal was rejected.

September 2020, Stone serving his sentence at HMP Frankland in Co Durham has alleged that fellow inmate Levi Bellfield was the man actually responsible for the Russell murders. And has laid down a challenge to Bellfield.

Stone says that he will undergo a lie detector if Bellfield provides a DNA sample, suggesting that this will prove his innocence, and that Bellfield was responsible for the attack on Lin Russell and her daughters.

The police had previously interviewed witnesses that gave Bellfield a "solid alibi" for the date when the Russell''s were murdered.

May 2021, a vital piece of evidence according to Stone's defence, was a shoelace, that police claim was lost, has now been found.

The defense team want new DNA tests done on this as they believe it will prove Stone's innocence.

June 2021, It is alleged that Levi Bellfield has admitted he was 'near' the area at the time of the murder of Lin & Megan Russell

Sunday 6th February 2022, In an historic letter to his solicitor Belfield has admitted to the murders of Lin & Megan Russell. 

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