James Bulger's mum says 'I shouldn't have let go' as she opens up about torment at son's killing in new TV doc

James Bulger's mum says 'I shouldn't have let go' as she opens up about torment at son's killing in new TV doc

July 22, 2021

JAMES Bulger's mum opened up about her son's murder in a new TV documentary admitting: "I shouldn't have let go."

An emotional Denise Fergus described her regret over the moment she let go of James' hand as she took out her purse to pay for her shopping on February 12, 1993.

"I shouldn't have let go of his hand," Denise is heard saying in a trailer for the new documentary.

"That was the biggest mistake of my life. I shouldn't have let go."

On that fateful day in 1993, Denise had been shopping in a butcher's in Bootle, Merseyside with her two-year-old son.

He had been running around the shop so she made sure to hold his hand.

But when she took out her purse to pay, she let go of his hand.

It was then that the two-year-old was led to his death by depraved Robert Thompson and Jon Venables in a story that shocked the nation.

The little boy was seen on CCTV walking out of the shopping centre hand-in-hand with one of his killers in one of the most chilling images of the 20th century.

Venables and Thompson told passers-by that the distressed toddler was their younger brother or that he was lost and they were taking him to a local police station.

The two 10-year-old's kidnapped, tortured and sexually abused the tot before leaving his body on a railway track.


Twisted Venables and Thompson then weighted his head down with rubble and lay him across railway tracks hoping he would be hit by a train to make the murder look like an accident.

James, who suffered 42 injuries in total, was sliced in half by a train and his body was discovered two days later.

Thompson and Venables were found guilty and sentenced to a minimum of eight years in prison, making them the country’s youngest killers.

Also featured in the 60 Minutes documentary is the unsettling confession of Jon Venables who told police that it was Robert's idea to kill the toddler.

"It was Robert's idea to kill him," a young Venables can be heard saying.

In another extract from the documentary, due to air in Australia this Sunday, Venables is asked by an officer about what James had said to him.

The 10-year-old can be heard imitating James' voice as he told the investigators that the toddler had said: "I want my mum".

At 18 years old, Venables and Thompson were both released from a young offenders’ institution under licence in June 2001.

After intensive rehabilitation, the pair were handed new identities.

Venables' new identity has been changed twice after he told friends he was a convicted murderer.

Both of their identities are protected by a worldwide injunction.

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