Britain’s youngest female double murderer who killed her father and a woman in separate incidents has received her first hearing and is free to walk prison.
Lorraine Thorpe was just 15 when she murdered her father Desmond Thorpe, 43, and Rosalyn Hunt, 41, in Ipswich, Suffolk, in August 2009.
Thorpe, who had been a part of Ipswich’s street drinking culture since she was 13, was convicted and sentenced at Old Bailey in London along with her ‘role model’ Paul Clarke, then 41 years old.
At the age of 16, Thorpe was told she would face a minimum of 14 years behind bars for the grisly double murders in the space of just nine days between August 1 and August 10, 2009.
She has now served her minimum term and has received a parole hearing likely to be heard in “early summer.”
Lorraine Thorpe became Britain’s youngest female double murderer at the age of 15 after the brutal murder of her father Desmond and Rosalyn Hunt
A seven-week trial at Ipswich Crown Court heard Rosalyn Hunt was the first victim and was beaten to death over several days, with Thorpe responsible for kicking, beating and stomping on her head.
Thorpe’s father Desmond, a “vulnerable” alcoholic, was choked with fear that he would tell the police about the first murder.
The court hearing in August 2010 revealed shocking details about the culture of violence among some street drinkers in Ipswich and about Thorpe’s descent into mayhem and murder.
One of 11 children, her parents had separated when she was 12 and she went to live with her alcoholic father in various squalid flats and even tents to evade social services.
Thorpe met Clarke, who was known as a bully among the street community, and they formed an unlikely drinking pair.
The jury was told that Clarke and mother-of-two Rosalyn – also a member of the drinking group – had spent time in each other’s flats in Ipswich drinking in the run-up to the murder.
The court heard that Rosalyn, who was once in a relationship with Clarke, was killed after he accused her of his dog attacking a child.
Paul Clarke carried out the brutal murders along with Thorpe in 2009
Thorpe and Clarke lured the victim back to her flat in Victoria Street, Ipswich, and tortured her for two days, using a cheese grater on her skin and then rubbing salt into the open wounds to increase the pain.
The teenager then allegedly used Rosalyn as a “punching bag” – stomping on her and breaking nine of her ribs before burning her hair and beating her with a dog leash.
After days of torture, their victim was still alive, so she was eventually beaten to death.
On August 9, 2009, a member of the public called police to express concern for Rosalyn’s safety, and officers found her dead upon entering her property.
Days after the murder, the pair decided to kill Desmond Thorpe, to dissuade him from implicating them in the first murder with the police.
Lorraine smothered her disabled father with a pillow before kicking him as he lay on the floor.
She later admitted to police that they would find “imprints of her trainer on his head.”
Desmond’s body was found by police on the morning of 10 August 2009, after being told a man had died in Limerick Close, Ipswich.
His body was found just hours after Rosalyn Hunt’s discovery, and police immediately announced that they suspected the murders were connected and arrested both Clarke and Thorpe.
On August 25, 2009, they appeared in court charged with the murders.
Thorpe and Clarke both denied the allegations and gave no evidence at trial.
Prosecutor Ros Jones said at the trial, “Rosalyn Hunt became a prisoner in her own home and died from multiple injuries as a result of the constant assaults she endured.
“Desmond Thorpe, who was killed days later, was stifled for reasons known only to Clarke and Thorpe.”
Rosalyn Hunt was tortured for days by the couple and psychologists said they had never seen such a level of violence from a young girl
As part of the evidence against them, jurors heard evidence from a young friend of Thorpe’s who said she had confessed to being a murderer.
A fellow inmate also testified that Thorpe had spoken to them about her father’s murder on the anniversary of his murder
A jury unanimously found them guilty of the double murders by majority decision of 10-2 after more than 17 hours of deliberations.
Judge Mr Justice Sweeney said Thorpe carried out the attacks in part because she was keen to ‘impress’ Clarke.
In his sentencing remarks, Sweeney said, “She was responsible for prolonged kicking, beating and stamping on Rosalyn, who was not fit to effectively defend herself from the start.
By the end of those attacks, she was completely helpless. Lorraine doesn’t regret it, but seems to have boasted about it, at one point describing to her friends how she stomped on Rosalyn’s head…
“The only possible explanation for his (father’s) death may be the fear that he would tell the police what happened to Rosalyn Hunt…
“I don’t accept that she was completely under Mr. Clark’s control.
“She’s someone who can be quite stubborn and willful and capable of being very manipulative herself… Her story is terrible.”
In a 2019 episode of Britain’s Deadliest Kids, consultant forensic psychologist Dr Keri Nixon tells the documentary, “She laughed at the violence they used against Rosalyn Hunt.
“In my experience, I have never seen this level of violence, this kind of injury from a 15-year-old girl.
“Usually in cases like this they will participate in some violence. But to be actively involved in such torturous activities is incredibly rare.”
Rosalyn’s brother Adrian Provins attended the hearings and was disgusted that Thorpe treated the deaths as a “big joke.”
He told the show, “The first time I went to court, all I remember is Lorraine Thorpe laughing and giggling at Paul Clarke like it was all a big, big joke.
‘Nobody stopped her. I was disgusted, felt like I wanted to jump over and rip her head off.”
Clarke was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 27 years.
In September 2014, Clarke was found dead at HMP Whitemoor Prison, Cambridgeshire. It is believed that his death was suicide.
A spokesperson for the Parole Board said: We can confirm that Lorraine Thorpe has been referred to the Parole Board by the Secretary of State for Justice and is following standard procedures.
“Decisions made by the Parole Board focus solely on the risk an inmate may pose to the public if released and whether that risk is manageable in the community.
“A panel will carefully examine a huge range of evidence, including details of the original crime and any evidence of behavior change, as well as the damage done and the impact the crime has had on the victims.
“Members read and process hundreds of pages of evidence and reports leading up to an oral hearing.
“Witness statements may be made at the hearing, such as probation officers, psychiatrists and psychologists, officials who monitor the offender in prison, and personal statements from victims.
‘It is standard practice that the detainee and witnesses are extensively questioned during the interrogation, which often lasts a whole day or more. Parole reviews are conducted thoroughly and with the utmost care. Protecting the public is our number one priority.”
The parole hearing for Thorpe, now 28, will last a day. A decision is made a few weeks later.
The panel may deny her licensed release, but may recommend that she be transferred to an open prison.