A homeless man has been sentenced to life in jail after confessing to a murder in 1983 so he could get off the streets.
Last year, a drunk Anthony Kemp confessed to Chiswick Police in west London after throwing stones at their window. In the early hours of the morning, he told officers he had “bashed” the victim’s “brains in” over an argument decades previously.
He said: “I don’t give a f*** what happens to me, cos I ain’t got long to live… I’m not going to live on the f***ing streets, that’s a fact.
“I’d rather the government f***ing look after me… I’d rather do the last few years of my life in bang-up than sleep on the f***ing streets.
“For 40 years, I got away with it and now I’m owning up to it”, he added.
Shortly after his drunken rant, the former alcoholic and heroin user attempted to retract his statement, but DNA left on a cigarette in the ashtray aligned with Kemp’s.
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The 59-year-old was sentenced to life with a minimum term of 15 and a half years at the Old Bailey, after he was found guilty of beating Christopher Ainscough to death with a marble ashtray in December 1983.
The court heard Ainscough invited Kemp back to his home in Kilburn, north-west London, in the early hours of the morning and was on the sofa when he was attacked.
A close friend of the victim said: “Chris was a kind, generous, caring and funny man. We just adopted him.
“He was charming and had the extraordinary ability to get on with anybody and everybody.
“What someone did to my beautiful friend was devastating.”
Kemp killed a “very special person” as if it did not matter, then “walked free” for almost 40 years, living the life her friend should have had, she said.
She added: “The brutality of what was done has haunted me.”