This brutal double murder at least had one redeeming factor and that is the twisted bastard who committed it was caught and received a minimum of twenty five years. What drove the killer to murder two women was that he was a gambling addict who owed around £16,500 to banks and credit companies, and thought that their place of work would provide a nice sum of money. They worked at Rachael`s Health Studio, a massage parlour, in Shrewsbury town centre. Annie Eels, 55, was simply the receptionist and not involved in any illicit goings-on. The other victim, Samantha Tapper, 23, was a prostitute.
Garry Harding, 22, from Welshpool, Powys, had waited in Shrewsbury Town Centre, passing the time reading a newspaper, and keeping observation on the parlour until he knew they were alone. He had a blunt instrument with him. Before he had spent time scouring the internet on various methods of killing, showing premeditation. He knew the studio as he had used it for sex with prostitutes. It was July 1st 2006 when Harding made his move. He entered the studio posing as a client but immediately attacked Mrs Eels, from LLansantffraid in Powys, striking her at least 16 times with what may have been a hammer. He then attacked Samantha Tapper, from Wolverhampton, striking her at least 14 times. Harding then searched for money, finding money that Miss Tapper had made from her clients. The deceased were found in a front room, in the early hours of 2nd.
Harding was quickly arrested and put on trial at Birmingham Crown Court. Three hours into the trial, he pleaded guilty to both murders and was sentenced to a minimum of 25 years, which considering the research into killing he did, was a bit light. He should have got a whole life sentence, meaning he leaves prison in a pine box. A pity.