Zara Aleena killer wrongly assessed as medium risk
Jordan McSweeney, 29 – the man who sexually assaulted and murdered law graduate Zara Aleena, had been wrongly assessed as “medium risk.”
McSweeney, who had a history of violence, was free to attack Aleena after a series of mistakes were made by probation staff, a report has found.
McSweeny attacked and killed Aleena in June 2022, just nine days after his release on licence from prison.
He had been wrongly assessed as “medium risk” by staff who were under “mounting pressure” at the time, Chief Inspector of Probation Justin Russell found.
“Immediate steps” to address the issues are being taken, the government said.
In December, McSweeney was given a minimum term of 38 years by a judge at the Old Bailey for the “terrifying and ruthless” attack on Aleena.
He had admitted to kicking and stamping on Aleena, who was walking home in east London when she was attacked. McSweeney had 28 previous convictions for 69 separate offences, dating back 17 years, Mr Russell’s report said.
Jordan McSweeney document history of violence
McSweeny is a prolific thief from east London. In court, he was described as a “damaged person” who had experienced violence as a child, he was taken into care and expelled from school. He sold drugs and took part in bare-knuckle fights for money.
He had served nine prison terms for crimes including burglary, theft and possession of an offensive weapon prior to the attack on Zara Aleena.
He also had a documented history of violence towards ex-partners.
The report says his case was allocated to a probation officer only nine days before he left prison, meaning there was little time for planning his supervision.
Information about some of his violent behaviour was not part of his probation – including the details of a restraining order taken out against him, the report found. Where he was going to stay was not known at the point of his release and he was not monitored with an electronic tag.