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James Bulger’s mother considered suicide after toddler’s murder

UK News | Published:

Denise Fergus’s new memoirs will shine a light on the ordeal of her son’s kidnap and brutal murder in 1993

The mother of murdered toddler James Bulger said she seriously considered suicide in the weeks after his horrific death.

Denise Fergus said she and the two-year-old’s father, Ralph Bulger, hit “rock bottom” as their son’s third birthday approached, shortly after he was abducted from Bootle Strand shopping centre in Liverpool and killed in February 1993.

In an extract from her forthcoming memoirs, I Let Him Go, serialised in the Mail on Sunday, Ms Fergus said: “I think we both hit rock bottom, I certainly felt I had nowhere left to fall.

A video still of toddler James Bulger being led away in the New Strand shopping centre in the Bootle area of Liverpool (PA Wire)
A video still of toddler James Bulger being led away in the New Strand shopping centre in the Bootle area of Liverpool (PA Wire)

Ms Fergus said their grief was compounded by her feeling that Mr Bulger blamed her for momentarily letting go of James’s hand while at the shopping centre, clearing the way for child killers Jon Venables and Robert Thompson to swoop and commit atrocities that would send shockwaves across the country.

Venables and Thompson, who were just 10 at the time of the killing, were jailed for life but released on licence with new identities in 2001.

She said: “Imagine my surprise when I saw smiles and laughter coming from their supporters as they interacted with Thompson and Venables in the dock. I just couldn’t believe my eyes.

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“Then I saw their shoulders start shaking and I thought, finally, some tears, but as I looked closer I saw they were laughing at something that had been said to them.

File photo of James Bulger (PA Wire)
File photo of James Bulger (PA Wire)

“My son was dead and they were chuckling without a care in the world.”

She added that she had not gone shopping alone since James was snatched, almost a quarter of a century ago.

Earlier this month, Venables was charged over indecent images of children for a second time.

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