Dead teenager's parents call for security cameras in schools

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The Independent Online

The mother of the murdered schoolboy, Luke Walmsley, yesterday called for more CCTV cameras at the school where he was killed, as the boy who stabbed him to death was detained for life.

The mother of the murdered schoolboy, Luke Walmsley, yesterday called for more CCTV cameras at the school where he was killed, as the boy who stabbed him to death was detained for life.

Jayne Walmsley, 41, said cameras should be introduced in locker areas and in the alcove where her son was stabbed through the heart by 16-year-old Alan Pennell during a break in lessons at Birkbeck College in North Somercotes, Lincolnshire, last November. "I do feel that there should be CCTV and it should be monitored during classroom changes," she said.

Mr Justice Goldring recommended Pennell, a bully with a history of violence, should serve a minimum of 12 years, a day after a jury at Nottingham Crown Court convicted him of murdering Luke, a potential England schoolboy international rugby player. Mrs Walmsley, a supermarket worker, said that her son was often picked on because he was "quite big for his age and very sporty and clever" but he never yielded to threats. "Luke was never afraid to stand up for what he believed in and he stood up to bullies," she said.

Detective Sergeant Sean Baxter, of the investigating team, said he agreed about the need to review security in Britain's schools but dismissed a call for airport-style checks or police officers in the corridors. "We have got to have an environment in schools that children can learn in and can feel comfortable," he said.

Within hours of sentencing, Stephen Twigg, the Education minister, announced a review of school security. Speaking at the Professional Association of Teachers' conference in Bournemouth, he said a special government committee would investigate whether new measures were needed to stop pupils taking knives into schools.