Tragic father slams justice system
The father of two young children murdered by their mother following the breakdown of their relationship has slammed the criminal justice system claiming that he felt he was on trial.
Fiona Donnison, 45, was jailed for a minimum of 32 years after being handed two life sentences when jurors found her unanimously guilty of murdering three-year-old Harry and two-year-old Elise Donnison.
The former City worker went into Heathfield police station in East Sussex on the morning of January 27 last year and told officers she had killed her children.
After searching the area officers found the children's smothered bodies zipped up in two holdalls in the boot of her Nissan car which was parked nearby and around the corner from Meadowside, the former family home, Lewes Crown Court heard.
Prosecutors believe the reason it was parked there and not on the drive of the large detached house was because after killing the children she had planned also to kill their father, Paul Donnison, with evidence suggesting she had lain in wait for him armed with two kitchen knives.
Speaking outside the court following his former partner's sentencing, Mr Donnison, 48, said that in contrast to the way he was treated, he felt the defendant was treated with "kid gloves" and did not even have to give evidence herself.
He said: "I attended court as often as I was able to, but often felt that it was I that was on trial. Despite killing my children, she didn't even have the courage to take to the stand to explain herself.
"Despite admitting to the killings and being detained, she seemed to have more rights and considerations than I had. If I had not lived through this personally then I would not have believed the experience that I and my family have had to endure. It is the system itself. It is wrong, it is biased in favour of the criminal and it is clearly unfair."
He spoke minutes after the judge, Mr Justice Nicol, revoked an order that had previously prevented the reporting of the fact prosecutors wanted Donnison also to be tried for the murder of her first child with Mr Donnison, a daughter named Mia who died of suspected cot death in April 2004, when aged nine months.
However in a hearing last December, it was decided there was not enough evidence to charge her.