Author(s): Nigel Cawthorne
Across Britain more and more people are choosing to ignore the criminal justice system and exact their own form of primitive revenge. On 1 November 2008, 23-year-old hoodie Donald Donlan was brutally stabbed to death in an alleyway in Manchester. Two women and two men have been arrested for his murder. 'Donlan was a neighbour from hell, a yob who caused nothing but trouble,' said a neighbour. 'No one would be surprised if someone decided to get even with him for all the misery he has caused.' The current wave of vigilantism began when the News of the World's 'name-and-shame' anti-paedophile campaign resulted in a 150-strong stone-throwing mob out on the streets of Portsmouth in August 2000, and the founding of the National Vigilante Organisation, which calls for the return of the death penalty and boasts on its website a page called 'Nonce Watch.'
In Vigilantes Nigel Cawthorne exposes the astonishing scale of the phenomenon in modern Britain - from the murderers and rapists executed by righteous avengers to the innocent victims in tragic cases of mistaken identity, from rampaging, almost comically ignorant mobs who mistake 'paediatricians' for 'paedophiles' to medieval-style vigilantes parading thieves through the streets with signs around their necks. For our society it boils down to a simple question: how can we fight crime with more crime?
Nigel Cawthorne is a true crime specialist, the author of such titles as Spree Killers, Sex Killers, Satanic Murder, Black Magic Murder, Killers, the Mammoth Book of Killers at Large and, most recently, House of Horrors - The True Story of Josef Fritzl, The Father From Hell. He also worked on Marshall Cavendish's long-running partwork Murder Casebook.
Introduction: The Law of the Jungle. The Merstham Mob. Kidnapping. Have-a-Go Heroes. Citizen's Arrest. Vigilantes Vindicated. Name and Shame. Paedophile Attacks. Murder of The Animal. Sympathy for the Devil. Punishing the Guiltless. Slaughter of the Innocents. Policing the Police. Family Factors. Drugs Bust. The Farmer's Defence. Home Security. Punishment Shootings. The Hand of Vengeance. The National Vigilante Organisation. Cracking Down on the Good Guys.