Derek Bentley

Convicted criminal from United Kingdom

Derek William Bentley (30 June 1933 – 28 January 1953) was a British teenager hanged for the murder of a police officer, committed in the course of a burglary attempt. The murder of the police officer was committed by a friend and accomplice of Bentley's, Christopher Craig, then aged 16. Bentley was convicted as a party to the murder, by the English law principle of common criminal purpose "joint enterprise". This created a cause célèbre and led to a 45-year-long campaign to win Derek Bentley a posthumous pardon, which was granted partially in 1993, then completely in 1998. The judge in court sentenced Bentley to death because of his interpretation of 'Let him have it' and described him as 'mentally aiding the murder of Police Constable Sidney Miles'. Derek Bentley attended Norbury Secondary Modern School in 1944, after failing the eleven-plus examination. In March 1948 Bentley and another boy were arrested for theft. In September 1948, he was sentenced to serve three years at Kingswood Approved School, near Bristol. Bentley was released from Kingswood school on 28 July 1950, and was a recluse for the rest of the year. In March 1951, Bentley was employed by a furniture removal firm  ( Wikipedia article )


Personal facts

Date of birth
United Kingdom


Date of death
Cause of death
Capital punishment,Hanging
Place of death

Comment Derek Bentley on facebook