Woman who hid slasher is jailed for three months

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The ex-girlfriend of “Scarborough Slasher” Damien Burns has been jailed for housing him when he absconded from prison earlier this year.

Caitlyn Murphy hid the escaped prisoner in a cupboard in her Wykeham Street address when police came looking for Burns on May 21.

Burns, 39, who was serving an indeterminate sentence for a knifepoint robbery in 2007, had walked out of the Category D Hatfield Prison in Doncaster two days earlier.

On Monday 22-year-old single mother Murphy broke down in tears when she was jailed for three months at Scarborough’ Magistrates’ Court after pleading guilty to harbouring an escaped prisoner.

The court heard that Murphy had been introduced to Burns whilst he was serving his sentence and the two had started a relationship.

Martin Butterworth, prosecuting, said that Murphy had visited Burns on four occasions and they had exchanged weekly calls and letters.

He said: “On the day in question police attended her address, she answered the door and said that she was alone in the property.

“Following a search Burns was found hiding in a cupboard.”

Mitigating Marcus Topham said that Murphy had admitted she had been “stupid” but did not know Burns was on the 

“She knew he had been moved to an open prison and when he called her he said he had been given day release,” he said.

He added: “It was only hours before the police arrived that she found out he was on the run when a friend showed her a newspaper cutting about him.

“She only lied to the police at the door as she feared for herself and for the welfare of her young child.”

He said the relationship with Burns was now over.

He appealed for a suspended sentence for his client but it was to no avail as she was handed three months behind bars, Burns had earlier been given six for his escape.

As she was cuffed and led to the cells Murphy broke down in tears, screaming “my son, my son”.