The mother of a 17-year-old Daventry boy killed in an attack by his best friend has said she wants to see a change in the law so people convicted of knife crime serve their full sentence.
Alison Bicknell spoke out this week after Harnaryan ‘Ryan’ Johal, 18, of Newbury Drive, Daventry, was found guilty of the involuntary manslaughter of her son Stanley Harrison following an argument that led to his fatal stabbing in the early hours of June 14 this year.
However, despite being sentenced to five years and three months in prison at Northampton Crown Court last week, Judge Rupert Mayo said Johal would serve just half in prison so – also taking into account the time he has already served in custody – will be locked up for just over two years.
Ms Bicknell, of Ashby Fields,has now said the sentence does not send out a deterrent.
She said: “I would have been more than happy with a five-year sentence if he was going to serve it.
“To do two-and-a-half-years is a disgrace.
“He is going to come out and he is still going to have his whole life ahead of him and he will be able to move on and still do everything he wants to. It is just wrong. He has not paid and it has given a lot of people the idea ‘I’ll just go ahead and do that as there is no consequence to it’.
“That is what is wrong with this justice system now.”
Ms Bicknell said she had no real worries about Ryan’s friendship with her son but did notice that he was quite “possessive” of Stanley. She said: “Nearly every night of the week they would be here at my house and a lot of Stanley’s friends did not like Ryan, they only stuck with him because of Stanley. Ryan would make sure he was here before anyone else and then everyone would turn up and go home because Ryan was here.
Ms Bicknell attended every day of the trial of Johal and said that she is struggling to come to terms with her son Stanley’s death, adding that she keeps hoping he will “walk through the door”.
During the trial, the court heard that one of Stanley’s last phone calls was to ask his mum to bring him a cigarette and he signed off by saying “love you mum, see you in the morning”.
Ms Bicknell said: “I would not want anybody to go through what I go through. I am up and down. I’m horrible sometimes, intolerant, I’m nasty, I’m so full of emotions and just want to cry all the time.
“Yet I’m sort of emotionless to other people and I just block everybody out. People are trying to be so good and so nice and they are. The whole of Daventry has been so supportive. I just keep wanting him to come home and walk through the door or text me. I still don’t believe it now. It feels like I’m on the outside looking in and in a minute I’m going to wake up and it’s going to be a big April Fool’s joke. It’s horrible being in other family environments.
“It’s not just about the time of the year but the things we used to watch together or the songs that come on the radio that we used to dance together to; little things like that. It’s not as if, now the trial’s over, move on, it’s all done. This is never ever going to go away.
“He [Stanley] was gobby, but everyone loved him. He was probably the only one who could go into any kebab shop in Daventry and get a free meal. He was charming. Everybody loved him.”