A dangerous killer who murdered a Good Samaritan when he tried to intervene in a mobile phone robbery has absconded from prison, police said today.
Brian Grady, 26, was part of a group of thugs on bikes who bullied, intimidated and robbed three teenage boys and threatened one with a knife.
But when passer-by Liam Attwell, 25, stepped in and allowed the teenagers to escape Grady plunged the knife into his chest.
Mr Attwell, a chef, never regained consciousness and tragically died three days later in hospital.
Grady – aged just 17 at the time of the horrific attack in 2003 – was sentenced to 11 years in prison for murder and robbery.
The judge presiding over the case took the unusual step of lifting an order protecting his identity.
Gwent Police said Grady, also known as Brian Revill, had failed to return to Category D HMP Prescoed, an open prison, on Monday.
They warned the public not to approach Grady as he could be dangerous but to call police immediately.
A spokesman said: “Gwent Police has activated its operational plan with the aim of locating him and the prison is co-operating fully with us.
“It is believed there may be a potential risk to the public due to the fact that he is no longer in the custody of the prison service.
Grady is described as white, 5ft 11ins, of medium build, with short light brown hair and blue eyes.
He has a scar under his left eye and speaks with a Bristol accent. Police believe he could be in Bristol as he has contacts there.
Speaking after the case, Mr Attwell’s mother Roisin Reddick said she was proud of her son’s brave actions.
She said: “I will never regret what Liam did, I just regret that he’s not here anymore.
Horrified MP David Davies, MP for Monmouth, slammed Brian Grady’s original “soft sentence” and questioned why he was placed into an open prison.
He said: “I am absolutely astonished that someone as dangerous as this was being housed in an open prison.
“It is shocking that he only got 11 years for doing what he did – taking someone’s life.
“The sentence was far too lax. I think this demonstrates that this was a low sentence in the first place.
“If you went back 50 years he would have been given the death penalty. When that was abolished we were told that life would mean life.
“I have been in the prison many times, it doesn’t feel like a prison at all. The cells are more like rooms.
“It is just astonishing. I am going to meet the Home Secretary in an hour and I will mention this to her.
“I will be seeking assistance from her that everything is being done to locate Grady.
“I hope that when he is recaptured some serious thought is given to whether it is appropriate for him to be released at all.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact Gwent Police on 101.