But Katie, 25, believes he is “a good person” – and would be happy for him to meet her four-year old son Alfie.
“I never thought you could have such a strong bond with someone you’ve never met but this is special. I can’t explain it but it’s so powerful.“Nothing would make me happier than for him to win his appeal so we can meet face to face and let our relationship grow into love and marriage.I don’t expect everyone to understand it and I’m not condoning Julius’ crimes, but I take people as I find them – and what I see is an intelligent, thoughtful person who got into the wrong crowd as a teen.I would never leave my boyfriend and risk criticism from friends and family if I wasn’t sure that Julius was worth it. You can’t help who you fall for.”Katie, from Malmesbury, Wilts, had been with engineer Ben, 24, for two years and was planning to marry him.
In a court case 13 years ago, it emerged that Bradford and two accomplices ambushed a 48-year-old father of seven and attempted to rob him before shooting him dead.
Despite his violent past, Katie said she has developed “an unstoppable connection” with him. So much so that she split with Ben, who did not want to give his surname, last month.
Katie said: “I didn’t go looking to find a relationship of any kind and I didn’t expect this. I am sorry for how it ended with my last relationship but now I have to focus on Julius and my son. They are my future.
“Despite his violent past, I would have no problem with him meeting Alfie. I’d hold Julius to the same standards as anyone else, so if I trust him, of course I’ll let him be around Alfie. If our connection is as strong in person as it is long distance, we have found something very rare.”But before they can begin their new life, Katie must raise enough money to get Bradford a top lawyer. He has submitted an application for appeal, meaning he could face a retrial next year.
Katie added: “I’m fundraising to get him a decent lawyer as I believe mistakes were made in his trial and I hope the new evidence brings that to light.“I will do everything in my power to get him his freedom so that we can focus on our future together.”
She has also started a petition via change.org called Get Julius Bradford Off Death Row Before It’s Too Late, which has 28 signatures. Katie admits that the responses to her Facebook campaign have been mixed.
If friends don’t agree with what I’m doing, that’s fine. I know what I’m doing is controversial and can’t expect everyone to get on board. But as my friends, they should at least try to understand. “It’s frustrating because I know he’s a good man and sometimes I feel like I’m the only one who can see that. I’m not denying what Julius did was wrong but let’s not forget he’s already served 13 years in prison.“I believe he deserves a second chance and maybe then we can have a happy future together as well.”She saidSource: Mirror