Without a trace
Their crime was called an act of ‘unparalleled barbarity’. Now the two boys who murdered James Bulger are men, their freedom and identities protected by the courts. So what has become of them?
By David James Smith Without a trace – Sunday Times – Times Online
(snip)He began art therapy, drawing faces with turned-down mouths and marks on the face, apparently re-creating the appearance of his victim. He was haunted by flashbacks of blood coming from James’s mouth. Venables told the art therapist she could sell the paintings for millions and she had to reassure him she would never do such a thing. He was acutely aware of his own notoriety and became hysterical, after the trial, when his and Thompson’s names became public knowledge for the first time. He said he feared becoming a new Myra Hindley, and spoke of his anxiety that people would break into Red Bank to attack him.
Malcolm Stevens saw correspondence from psychiatrists, psychologists and psychotherapists across the world offering their help in treating the two boys, or asking to interview them for their own researches. These requests were refused, and the correspondence from the public – which was evenly split 50-50, between the kind, gift-laden letters and the unpleasant – was ignored. Stevens felt it could be distorting for Thompson and Venables to see any of it, especially the excess religious material reassuring the boys that Jesus loved them and forgave them. He could see how that might undermine their view of the seriousness of the offence.