A Silvertown mother will find out today (September 29) whether she will spend time behind bars for killing a convicted paedophile who lived nearby.
Sarah Sands, 32, stabbed 77-year-old neighbour Michael Pleasted to death after she heard about fresh allegations that he had molested three young boys.
Last November, armed with a knife, Sands went to Pleasted’s flat and, by the time she left, he was bleeding to death after a “determined and sustained” assault. She was cleared of murder at the Old Bailey in July but convicted of manslaughter by reason of loss of control.
Pleasted had 24 previous convictions for sexual offences between 1970 and 1991 and had served time in jail. At the time of his death, he was on bail awaiting trial on two charges of sexual assault on two children aged under 13. Police were investigating a further allegation he had abused a third boy.
• Background: Mum cleared of murder
Within hours, Sands handed herself into police, telling an officer: “Who houses a f****** paedophile on an estate, like, seriously? He was, like, asking for trouble.”
She said she had originally visited the flat to plead with the pensioner to admit to his crimes but his refusal to do so and his “smirking” triggered her response.
She told the court: “It was not how it was meant to go. He was meant to listen to me.”
Judge Nicholas Cooke QC said he would sentence Sands on the basis that Pleasted was guilty of his latest crimes.