BILL Millward still carries the scars from his run-in with one of Australia’s most callous killers. Not that he cares.

He just wants to make sure that Kevin Crump is shown no mercy as he makes a final plea for freedom.

The bullet scar on his head speaks volumes about why MrMillward, a young Cessnock police officer at the time of Crump’s murderous rampage, wants the killer kept behind bars. But it’s the impact felt by Crump’s victims that drives him most.

The former highway patrolman was shot in the face while in pursuit of the man he says should never be released from jail.

Crump and his co-accused Allan Baker were given life sentences for the murder of Ian Lamb and for the rape and conspiracy to murder mother-of-three Virginia Morse 38 years ago.

Crump, now 64, will make a final plea for freedom at a High Court hearing on November 16.

He argues that it is unconstitutional to stop him applying for parole after his 30-year life sentence expired in 2003.

‘‘He shouldn’t be able to keep appealing like this and I think the pathetic creep should have been given the death penalty in the first place,’’ MrMillward said.

‘‘All this stirs up the emotions and sadness of everyone involved, particularly his victims’ family. It’s not right.’’

In November 1973, MrMillward was a senior constable and the father of two young children when he was put in the firing line of Crump and Baker as they tried to avoid capture for what police first thought was a break and enter and car theft.

But the day took a sinister turn when it was realised they were desperate men on the run from brutal crimes.

Crump and Baker were later charged with maliciously wounding a police officer [Millward] with intent to prevent lawful apprehension.

MrMillward had known Crump, a Cessnock resident, from his highway patrol duties.

‘‘Our paths had crossed, I knew him personally from when I had to defect his cars,’’ he said.

‘‘I thought he was undesirable, a part-time crim you could say, but nothing like it all ended up.