VILLAGERS ARE UNITED IN ANGER
PARENTS and residents seemed united in condemnation of the authorities after scant detail was broadcast about escaped killer Richard Dennick.
It took more than 24 hours from the time he went missing from Llanfairfechan’s Bryn y Neuadd hospital for the full details to emerge.
Resident Mike Williams said: “I, like a lot of people in Llanfairfechan, am frustrated that we weren’t informed and were kept in the dark for so long.
“And 24 hours later the story comes out that here was a convicted murderer. It’s not good. We need to know because there are young families here.”
Barbara Hughes, a former laundry worker at the unit, said: “It was really frightening. We didn’t know what was happening.
“There used to be a security alarm. Maybe it should be brought back.”
The Llanfairfechan resident used to go on walks alone on nearby Garreg Fawr hill but stopped doing so in favour of the beach due to concern about the perceived risk from patients let out in the town.
But Susan Barton questioned the risk. She said: “What puzzles me is why, if he was out on the town, he was suddenly deemed to be dangerous?”
A third resident, a former Bryn y Neuadd nurse, saw three or four police cars at Bryn y Neuadd on Tuesday and said there should have been a low key sign.
“It could have said ‘A resident has escaped. Please be alert. He could be dangerous.’ ” But he doubts Bracken posed a risk. He said: “He was 14 when he did the murder and has been incarcer- ated for 33 years.
“I’ve worked in Bryn y Neuadd and I can see it gnaws away at people. Some are nodding and chewing sofas. Give the guy a chance.
“He probably got a train to London, got out at Euston and thought ‘Where the hell do I go now?’ ”
Janey Mitton, 33, who has two children at Ty Bryn, the nursery inside the grounds of the hospital, said even nursery staff were left in the dark. “We didn’t know anything about it until this morning,” she said on Tuesday. “The nursery staff knew nothing really. They found out about it via social media.”
Parents outside Ysgol Babanod Llanfairfechan looked fearful on Tuesday afternoon as they collected their little ones, who had been kept inside at break times on the advice of North Wales Police and Conwy council.
One said: “I have been on tenterhooks all day. No one will tell us anything. It just seems that, whoever this guy is, his needs are coming before anyone else.”
Llanfairfechan resident Gwyn Jones, 54, agreed the lack of information was a real problem.
“I saw him (Dennick) last week,” he said. “I was going to the shop to get my paper. I don’t know how long he has been here.
“It’s just so annoying seeing the helicopter flying around and they won’t tell you what’s going on.”
Another parent picking up his daughter from school felt extra safeguards are needed. “They should be tagging these people when they are let out,” he said.