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Murderer of teen found beaten to death in Woodford Green may launch appeal

PUBLISHED: 09:00 25 February 2016

Emma Hall, sentenced to life for the murder of Luke Harwood, with a 17 year minimum. Photo: Met Police

Emma Hall, sentenced to life for the murder of Luke Harwood, with a 17 year minimum. Photo: Met Police

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A teenager’s killer may launch an appeal against her conviction after judges ruled the law she was convicted under has been wrongly interpreted.

Tony O'Toole jailed for life with a 17 year minimum for the murder of  Luke Harwood. Photo: Central NewsTony O'Toole jailed for life with a 17 year minimum for the murder of Luke Harwood. Photo: Central News

Luke Harwood, 18, was driven to his death at Broadmead Road playing fields, Broadmead Road, Woodford Green in 2012, by Emma Hall, 24 of Crow Lane, Romford.

Mr Harwood was beaten so badly by his housemates after being wrongly accused of rape that his skull was crushed.

Hall was convicted for her part in his murder in 2013 along with Tony O’Toole, 34, and James Danby, 30, who, jurors were told, struck the fatal blows.

Hall and O’Toole were convicted of murder under the joint enterprise law, used to convict people who could have “foreseen” violent acts by their associates.

James Danby (foreground), Tony O'Toole (behind) and Emma Hall (reflected, left). This photo was uploaded just hours before they killed Luke HarwoodJames Danby (foreground), Tony O'Toole (behind) and Emma Hall (reflected, left). This photo was uploaded just hours before they killed Luke Harwood

Hall was told she would serve a minimum of 15 years, increased to 17 on appeal.

The Recorder has been told Hall is now hoping to appeal against her conviction after Supreme Court judges said it was wrong to treat foresight as a sufficient test.

The source, who speaks to Hall every day but did not want to be named, said: “Emma said she knows that it won’t be an instant thing, but if she can get her sentence reduced she has got a little light at the end of the tunnel.”

Jan Cunliffe, spokeswoman for campaign group Joint Enterprise Not Guilty By Association (JENGba), welcomed the ruling calling the law a “great injustice”.

She said the organisation would tread carefully to try and avoid causing distress to victims’ families.

“When I read these cases the first thing I do is get upset for the victim,” she added.

Leah Bunns, spokeswoman for national charity Victim Support, said anyone worried or upset by the ruling should get in touch with the organisation, which has specially-trained caseworkers and volunteers who can help.

Visit victimsupport.org.uk or call the support line on 0808 168 9111 for more information.


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