The murder of Sally Anne Bowman in 2005 was a terrible crime and it is to be hoped that Mark Dixie, her killer, remains incarcerated for the rest of his life.
Unfortunately, the case has renewed calls for the rest of us to suffer as well:
Detective Superintendent Stuart Cundy, who led the Bowman investigation, said having the DNA of everyone in Britain on file would speed up arrests and cut down on further offending.The cost and imposition of such an authoritarian measure should be enough to render it unconscionable, but there is another reason. It wasn't the DNA evidence alone which would have tended to incriminate Dixie:
Dixie, who was sentenced this afternoon and told that he would have to serve at least 34 years in prison, had a string of previous convictions for sex offences. Detectives believe he may even have killed while living in Australia in the 1990s.And again:
His fantasising about the sex killing on an earlier occasion, when he performed a sex act over newspaper pictures of blonde Sally Anne, helped convict him.As well as Sally Anne's murderer, then, Mark Dixie is also a convicted sex offender and pervert who might well have killed before.
Dixie filmed the act and the recording was discovered among his belongings in the barn of the Horley pub [where he was arrested for another offence in 2006].
There can be no objection to keeping the details of such filthy vermin on file. Those in the British justice system who would want to catalogue the whole country, however, would be well advised to stick to persecuting the scumbags, which is what we pay them for.
As I have written before, it is laudable that parliament has resisted calls for a universal rollout of the DNA database in the past.
It should continue to do so.