Mother’s anguish at the ‘monster’ she let stay at her house who stabbed her four-year-old boy to death as he slept

They do say no good deed goes unpunished. Really tragic story.

  • Anwar Rosser given whole-life tariff for  murder of Riley Turner, four
  • Former soldier stabbed child 30 times as  he slept in his own bed
  • Rosser allowed to stay at house after  Riley’s mother ‘took pity on him’

By Chris  Brooke and James Rush


Anwar Rosser has been told he will never be released from prison after he admitted the 'savage' and 'sadistic' murder of a 'happy and bubbly' four-year-old boy

Anwar Rosser has been told he will never be released  from prison after he admitted the ‘savage’ and ‘sadistic’ murder of a ‘happy and  bubbly’ four-year-old boy

The mother of a four-year-old boy savagely  murdered by a friend who was allowed to sleep on her sofa has said she feels ‘so  much guilt’ over letting the ‘monster’ stay with them.

Sharon Smith and her partner Guy Earwaker had  thought psychopath Anwar Daniel Rosser was a harmless neighbour and allowed him  to stay at their house when he asked after turning up after a night  out.

In the early hours, the 33-year-old sneaked  upstairs armed with four knives and stabbed Riley Turner to death.

He then crept into another bedroom where the  boy’s mother and her partner were sleeping and curled up to sleep on the  floor.

In a victim impact statement read in court  Miss Smith said: ‘I wish I had told the monster no that night when he asked if  he could sleep. He said people were outside his house and were going to beat him  up and I believed him. I didn’t want him to get beaten up, but all along he had  a knife in his pocket, plotting to hurt one of us, or all of us.

‘I feel so much guilt that my poor son had to  go through such horrific things because my kind heart didn’t want to let that  monster get beaten up. Now my kind heart cost me my son’s life.

‘I don’t feel like ever being nice to people  at all except my family. The guilt eats me away every day. What he’s done is  unforgivable, he’s ruined our lives.’

In the morning, following the attack, the  mother-of-three, 26, was shocked to find Rosser curled up in a ball on the floor  next to her, and ordered him to leave.

Moments later her partner, Guy Earwaker,  noticed Riley’s light on and went to check his room – only to find it covered in  blood and the boy semi-naked and dead on the bed with his throat cut.

Riley had been strangled, repeatedly stabbed  and attacked in a sexual manner. Chillingly, Rosser had waited downstairs to  hear the anguished screams. He escaped, but was arrested later by  police.

Riley Turner was stabbed 30 times as he slept in his own bed after the boy's mother and her boyfriend allowed Rosser to stay at their house

Riley Turner was stabbed 30 times as he slept in his own  bed after the boy’s mother and her boyfriend allowed Rosser to stay at their  house

Yesterday Rosser, a former soldier with a  history of being violent when drunk, admitted murder at Bradford Crown Court.  Experts agreed he was not mad but was a psychopath who could commit more ‘acts  of sadistic homicide’.

Mr Justice Coulson branded him an  ‘exceptionally dangerous man’ who had shown ‘appalling savagery’. He jailed  Rosser for life and there were emotional scenes in the public gallery as the  judged ordered he remain behind bars ‘for the rest of his natural  life’.

 Victim impact statements read in court showed  how the family’s life has been devastated. Miss Smith described Rosser as a  ‘sick monster’ and said she had been frightened to go outside since the murder.

‘I get in a panic when a man walks past. I  don’t trust men at all.’


Riley was described as an 'extremely happy, active and popular little boy who was particularly close to his twin brother'

Riley was described as an ‘extremely happy, active and  popular little boy who was particularly close to his twin brother’

She said Riley was a ‘happy, bubbly, caring  and loving’ child and she was enduring a ‘bad nightmare’ without him. ‘This  monster has hurt us so much, we will never ever recover from this.’ Riley’s  identical twin brother Mackenzie regularly asks why he can’t ‘go to the sky’ to  play with his brother.

The court heard Rosser had gone to the  family’s house after spending the evening in a local pub. He asked to stay  overnight – telling the couple he feared people he owed money to were waiting  for him to return home and would beat him up.

Miss Smith and other relatives left the court  when prosecutor Paul Greaney, QC, detailed the horrific nature of the ‘sadistic’  murder, which had a ‘strong sexual component’.

The court heard that Miss Smith and Mr  Earwaker, 23, had been friends with Rosser for a few months, and had shown  ‘considerable kindness’ by helping the part-time chef to furnish his nearby  flat. There had never been an argument between them.

Rosser had turned up at Riley’s family home  in Keighley, West Yorkshire, on January 19 last year after spending the evening  drinking. He was described as ‘intoxicated’ but in control, the court  heard.

Riley, Mackenzie and 18-month-old brother  Tyler were asleep in separate rooms upstairs when the couple went to bed,  leaving Rosser to sleep on the sofa.

On the day before Riley's death, Rosser - who lived opposite the family - had been drinking at a nearby pub, where he 'drank a good deal', the court heard

On the day before Riley’s death, Rosser – who lived  opposite the family – had been drinking at a nearby pub, where he ‘drank a good  deal’, the court heard 
Riley's mother woke up at around 4.30am to find Rosser curled in a ball next to her bed

Riley’s mother woke up at around 4.30am to find Rosser  curled in a ball next to her bed 
Rosser was holding a brown-handled knife when he was find - a weapon he stole from a pub he had been drinking at

Rosser was holding a brown-handled knife when he was  find – a weapon he stole from a pub he had been drinking at


Speaking after the sentencing,  Detective  Superintendent Mark Ridley, Senior Investigating Officer,  said: ‘This has been  an incredibly horrifying and tragic case which has  had a profound effect on all  those involved in the investigation.

‘Riley was a very much loved son, grandson  and brother who will be deeply missed by his family and friends.

‘Rosser abused the kindness and compassion  shown to him by Riley’s family, when they allowed him to stay in the safety of  their own home.

‘He has shown no remorse or compassion for  the pain suffered by Riley’s  family by offering an explanation for his savage  and gratuitous actions.

‘The death of Riley in such circumstances  provides a clear indication that  Rosser presents a significant danger to all  those who may come into  contact with him, which is reflected in the (whole  life) sentence  imposed upon him today.

‘Today brings to an end what has been a very  sad and disturbing case.’

At 4am, Miss Smith woke up ‘scared’ to see  Rosser next to her. He apologised for upsetting her, asked for tobacco and left  the room. Moments later Mr Earwaker walked into an unimaginable scene of horror  in Riley’s bedroom.

‘He entered the room and then returned to his  own bedroom in a panic,’ said Mr Greaney. He was ‘unable to speak’ out of trauma  and the mother then saw for herself what had happened.

After being taken to a police station later  that morning, Rosser said: ‘I know I’ve done summat, but I don’t know  what.’

The court heard that Rosser had been adopted  at five by a professional couple and given a loving upbringing. But despite a  stable home life, he was in trouble from an early age, starting fires and  bullying other children.

At 16, he carried out a similarly chilling  and motiveless attack on an ‘innocent, sleeping victim’ when he smashed a trophy  on to the head of another 16-year-old who was ‘crashed out in a bedroom’ during  a house party.

Rosser joined the Army but was discharged  without seeing active service because of aggressive drunken behaviour.

He became an alcoholic and was in regular  trouble for ‘drink-induced anger’.

Rosser was even arrested on a hospital ward,  where his mental health was being assessed, because he was threatening  staff.

Outside court, Detective Superintendent Mark  Ridley said Rosser ‘abused the kindness and compassion shown to him by Riley’s  family’ and he has ‘offered no explanation for his savage and gratuitous  actions’.


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