If you are not in England, you may have never heard of Charles Bronson, one of the most eccentric prisoners in Europe. Even without killing anyone, he has spent more time in British prisons than some of the most notorious serial killers. Here are some bizarre facts about his life:
01. Life imprisonment
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Before changing its name to Charles Bronson in honor of the American actor (and then to Charlie Salvador because of Salvador Dalí), his name was Michael Peterson. His first arrest was happened in 1974; he was arrested for armed robbery at a post office. He stole just £ 26 (about US $ 131), and was sentenced to seven years in jail. But a sequence of endless assaults on other prisoners and guards, as well as other bizarre behavior, caused him to spend more than 40 years in prison so far.
He probably holds the record for prison transfers in a country for having gone through more than 150 sectors of prisons and psychiatric hospitals. In all these years, he attacked more than 20 guards (and several prisoners), had 11 hostages and caused half a million pounds worth of physical damage.
02. The protests on the roof
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In 1978, Bronson was declared mentally unstable and was sent to the Broadmoor psychiatrical hospital. According to their reports, there he was beaten regularly and forced to take injections of a drug that caused terrible side effects like muscle spasms. He protested invading the roof and spending almost a week there. He was eventually convinced by his brother and father and came down.
Only in this episode, it caused a loss of 750,000 pounds. While he was in the hospital, he fled to the roof twice more. He was later declared mentally stable and transferred to a common prison, where he made five other protests on the roof. “I’ve been on more roofs than Santa Claus,” said Bronson.
03. fitness program in solitary
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After spending so much time in solitary confinement, Charles Bronson had developed his own fitness program, and even took the opportunity to throw the book of Solitary Fitness , which describes his routine. It shows how one can be muscular without the help of fitness equipment and no food supplements or healthy eating.
In the book he describes his technique called “Soco solitary cow,” in which he claimed to be so strong that he can be used to bring down a cow. he also claimed to be able to punch a hole in a bulletproof glass, kick steel doors down and lift men above his head, and jump from a height of nine meters (about four floors) without getting hurt.
He may be was exaggerating some of his skills, but you can not deny that his strength was impressive. He had bent a steel door with his bare hands and had held the world record for arm flexion – he claimed to do 2,000 of them every day.
Besides the physical exercises, he also described some queer techniques like how to pass a string between the nostril and mouth (throat) and swallow pieces of wet tissue and then pull them back to clean the stomach!
04. 69 days of freedom
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While in prison, Charles Bronson met the twins Ronnie and Reggie Kray, the most violent mobsters in London. When he was finally released in 1987, he was involved with a conversant of the Kray twins, who invited him to participate in illegal underground boxing fights with bare hands. That’s when he adopted the name Charles Bronson.
To surprise his girlfriend Alison in the new year of 1988, he robbed a jewelry store, gave her a ring and sold the rest. Seven days later, he was arrested. The police who arrested him used his fighter-name, Charles Bronson, and he decided to keep that nickname.