Murderer who helped stop London Bridge attacker granted royal pardon

Steve Gallant with Jack Merritt, who died in the attack. Photograph: PA

A convicted murderer who helped to stop an attack on London Bridge, armed with a narwhal tusk, has been granted a royal pardon and will be considered for parole 10 months early.

Steven Gallant, who is serving a 17-year sentence in the UK for the murder of firefighter Barrie Jackson, has been granted the rare royal prerogative of mercy.

Steven Gallant, who was praised for risking his life to stop the attack, has been granted the royal prerogative of mercy, an extremely rare case of absolution for a convicted murderer.

Gallant, 42, will see the 17-year sentence he received in 2005 reduced by 10 months, and could apply for parole next June, the Mirror reported.

Steven Gallant was on day release attending a prisoner rehabilitation event when he confronted Usman Khan with a narwhal tusk after the 28-year-old began stabbing people in November 2019.

Gallant’s Parole Board will decide whether he can be released early.

A Ministry of Justice spokesperson said: “The lord chancellor has granted Steven Gallant a Royal Prerogative of Mercy reducing his minimum tariff by 10 months in recognition of his exceptionally brave actions at Fishmongers’ Hall, which helped save people’s lives despite the tremendous risk to his own.”

Mr Merritt’s father David told the Daily Mirror: “Steve fully deserves this pardon, or reduction in sentence.

“It is fantastic. He was very close to Jack and he turned his life around and reformed. I am really pleased for him.”

Gallant was one of two men convicted of the murder of Barrie Jackson, 33.

During the trial, Hull Crown Court heard the attack was carried out because Gallant wrongly believed Mr Jackson had attacked his girlfriend.

Mr Jackson’s student son Jack, 21, told the Mirror: “In my mind, Gallant has nearly done his time and if someone has undergone rehabilitation and change, which it seems he has, then it’s fair enough.”

Gallant was one of three people who were filmed restraining Khan on the bridge during the attack.

He said earlier this year that he “did not hesitate” to intervene.

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