Timeline

Crime Files

Timeline

1986 Robert Napper is fined and given a conditional discharge after being found in possession of an airgun10 March 1992 Napper tries to rape a 17 year old girl. Eight days later, he sexually assaults another teenage girl at knifepointMay 1992 Napper grabs a 22 year old mother pushing her two year old daughter in a buggy along the Green Chain Walk in broad daylight. He strangles, batters and rapes her15 July 1992 Napper murders Rachel Jane Nickell: The only witness, her two year old sonAugust 1993 Police interview Napper after a couple complain about him spying on a young blonde in her flat. The officers’ notes read ‘Subject strange, abnormal, should be considered as a possible rapist, indecency type suspect.’September 1992 Police first arrest Colin Stagg3 November 1993 Robert Napper rapes and murders 28 year old Samantha Bisset, and Jazmine, her four year old daughterMay 20 1994 Napper is placed under police surveillanceSeptember 1994 The case against Colin Stagg collapses as Mr Justice Ognall condemns the ‘honey trap’ as ‘deceptive conduct of the grossest kind.’October 1995 Napper admits manslaughter due to diminished responsibility1998 ‘Lizzie James’, the undercover detective, now 33, takes early retirement2001 ‘Lizzie James’, the undercover detective receives £125,000 from the Met in an out of court settlement. Alex Hanscombe, Rachel’s son, receives just £90,000 from the Criminal Injuries Compensation AuthoritySeptember 2003 New DNA profiling matches Napper to the Nickell killingSummer 2007 Colin Stagg receives a record compensation payment of £700,000 from the Home Office18 December 2008 Robert Napper pleads guilty to Nickell’s murder on the grounds of diminished responsibility. For the first time, the Met police apologise to Colin Stagg when assistant commissioner John Yates writes to him and makes a public statement of regretJune 2009 The Independent Police Complaints Commission release a damning report concluding that the Met had missed many opportunities to stop Napper before he killed Rachel2010 Andre and Alex Hanscombe lodge a complaint over the Met’s failure to capture Napper with the European Court of Human Rights2011 Alex Hanscombe gives his first ever interview to the press. The little boy whose earliest memories are of seeing his mother murdered, and who has spent the rest of his life abroad as a result, comes across as a young man remarkably lacking in self pity, bitterness, or the need for revenge