Farmer Tony Martin says he has never gone back in his former home 15 years after burglar death

12:53 20 August 2014

Tony Martin, who has still not gone into his former home 15 years after the Bleak House shootings. Picture: Chris Bishop

Tony Martin, who has still not gone into his former home 15 years after the Bleak House shootings. Picture: Chris Bishop

Archant

Farmer Tony Martin says he’s never gone back in the house where he killed a burglar 15 years ago.

Mr Martin turned his shotgun on two burglars, killing one and wounding the other, in August 1999.

“I still haven’t been back in my house,” said Mr Martin, who was found guilty of murdering Fred Barras and given life, before being freed on appeal, when the conviction was reduced to manslaughter.

“I don’t relish the idea of going back in there, getting arrested and going to prison again. I tidy up around it - it’s surrounded by water at the moment, I call it the Everglades.”

When a car-load of burglars set off from Newark, Notts, to burgle the property, they found Mr Martin waiting with a pump-action Remington.

Fred Barras, 16, was found dead near the isolated property the following day. His accomplice Brendan Fearon, then 28, crawled away peppered with buckshot and raised the alarm.

Mr Martin was charged with murder and jailed for life the following year, when a jury at Norwich Crown Court found him guilty amid a worldwide outcry. The trial judge said the sentence should serve as a warning to those tempted to take the law into their own hands.

But the conviction was reduced to manslaughter and the sentence reduced to five years by the Appeal Court, in 2003. Mr Martin was freed shortly afterwards.

The case sparked a national debate about how much force was reasonable when it came to defending your home.

Mr Martin said he still farms the land around his former home Bleak House, at Emneth Hungate. But he is evasive about where he now lives, claiming he has several homes.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Cambs Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Cambs Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Cambs Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

Yesterday, 11:50
Joe Perry

Joe Perry has won his first major ranking title.

Yesterday, 22:08
Wisbech rail. MP Steve Barclay with letter from Eric Pickles.

Local government minister Eric Pickles has told a fellow minister to get a move on to bring the Wisbech to March rail line back into service.

52 minutes ago
Tree blown down at junction of Beech Lane and New Barnes, Ely (Photo: Clinton Edwards)

Ely got a battering on Sunday as high winds brought down trees, fence panels, and even a lamp post.

Yesterday, 10:00
Charity cheque presentation to Facet from Cromwell college students Left: Caitlin Clark, Georgina Dale, Facet manager Jane Clifton and Shannon Buckton. Picture: Steve Williams.

Three Cromwell Community College students banded together to raise more than £165 for a charity which supports people with learning disabilities.

Most read stories

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Cambs Times e-edition today E-edition