He has spent two-thirds of his life in total isolation. Since 1983, Robert Maudsley has been locked in a special glass cell in Wakefield prison. A record sentence, equal to the atrocities that England’s most dangerous prisoner committed. Nicknamed by the British press “the real Hannibal Lecter”, in reference to the character played by Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs, Robert Maudsley killed four people. In 1974, he was only 21 years old when he committed his very first murder, that of a customer of the rental shop in which he worked. Arrested and then found guilty, Robert Maudsley was imprisoned. And it was in prison that he continued his crimes. His early years at Broadmoor Hospital, known to house some of the UK’s most violent prisoners, went rather normally.
But in 1977, he tortured one of his fellow inmates for hours, to death, even pushing a spoon so far into his ear that it touched his brain. The following year, the monstrous serial killer strangled and stabbed Salney Darwood in his cell, before hiding the body under his bed. He then set out to find his next victim: Bill Roberts, who had been jailed for sexually abusing a seven-year-old girl. It was after this new crime that he was deemed too dangerous to be imprisoned alongside other criminals. Robert Maudsley’s cell, which was completed in 1983, has been nicknamed the Glass Cage because it resembles that of Anthony Hopkins in the film, The Silence of the Lambs.
Robert Maudsley wanted to kill himself
Since 1983, the bloody killer has lived 23 hours a day in a 5.5 by 4.5 meter room with bullet-proof glass walls that leave no hidden nooks and crannies for the guards. The cell has only a concrete bed, a toilet riveted to the floor, and a chair and a table made from compressed cardboard. In 2003, he wrote a letter explaining his situation to a documentary filmmaker. “The prison authorities see me as a problem and the solution they found was to put me in solitary confinement, throw away the key and bury me alive in a concrete coffin,” wrote Robert Maudsley. I don’t care whether I’m crazy or bad. They don’t have an answer and don’t care as long as I stay out of sight. ” In March 2000, the serial killer pleaded for the conditions of his isolation to be relaxed or for him to be allowed to commit suicide via a cyanide capsule. In vain.
Robert Maudsley © ORION PICTURES