Dewsbury Kidnap Mum Jail Release
5 April 2012, 15:28
Karen Matthews, the Dewsbury mum who abducted her own daughter Shannon is set to be released from Foston Hall prison near Derby.
Harry Fletcher from the Probabiton Union Napo said “Matthews will be on licence for the remainder of her sentence and will be banned from returning to the area of Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, where she lived”.
The conditions of Matthews's release also ban her from associating with Michael Donovan, in whose flat the youngster was found.
Donovan was also jailed for eight years and has already been released.
Matthews has only served half her eight year sentence.
Mr Fletcher added: “Because of her notoriety, special measures will be taken to protect her from threats and from getting involved in any further offending.”
Matthews will also have to report to probation, live at an approved address, stay in the UK, and be of good behaviour.
Shannon was nine when she disappeared from her home in Dewsbury Moor in February 2008.
She was found 24 days later in Donovan's flat in Lidgate Gardens, Batley Carr, West Yorkshire, in the base of a divan bed.
The youngster had been drugged and forced to adhere to a strict list of rules while held captive.
Today, residents on Matthews old estate Dewsbury Moor said they just wanted to move on.
The vicar there, Rev Kathy Robertson, said today: “There's still a lot of hurt among some people there but they are a strong, robust community.
”You just have to look at how everyone came together to look for Shannon. It showed what a strong community spirit there is.
But Matthews wants to take part in a lie detector test on ITV's Jeremy Kyle show as she continues to protest her innocence, her cousin Susan Howgate said.
“She's dyed her hair but her face is still going to be the same. People are going to recognise her wherever she goes,” Ms Howgate said.
“If she gets in touch with me, I'll never speak to her again. I don't want anything to do with her.
“She's ruined our lives and for the rest of the family. If I ever see her in the street, I'll never speak to her.”
Prosecutors said Donovan kept Shannon imprisoned as part of a plan he and Matthews hatched to claim a £50,000 reward offered by a national newspaper.
The trial judge said it was doubtful Matthews and Donovan, who both have a low IQ, could have planned and carried out the kidnap without other people.
The court was told the ordeal has left Shannon “disturbed and traumatised” and suffering from nightmares.