The family of a man, murdered in a frenzied knife attack 14 years ago, are to complain about the way they heard of his killer's release.
Andrew Stanyer's relatives were informed about a decision to release Robert Bage on parole from his life sentence via an answerphone message.
Unemployed Bage, then of Waterloo Road, Cobridge, Stoke-on-Trent, stabbed 24-year-old Mr Stanyer 40 times in a premeditated attack on March 1 1991.
The 30-year-old lay in wait for Mr Stanyer, of Pittshill, also Stoke-on-Trent, because he had begun a relationship with his former common-law wife. He was jailed for life in 1991 after pleading guilty at Stafford Crown Court to murder.
Mr Stanyer's brother, Alan, said the answerphone message was unexpected and the news had been devastating, particularly for his 75-year-old father, Frank. The self-employed painter and decorator added: "She (the case worker) said she had tried to get in touch with me and that she didn't really like leaving messages but said he (Bage) was going to be released some time in mid-March.
"She said she had asked for confirmation of the conditions of release and said she was going for two weeks holiday and wouldn't be back until the start of March.
"I was a little bit disappointed. Why couldn't she leave a message asking us to get in touch with the office?"
Mr Stanyer, of Kidsgrove, said he accepted that Bage would be released at some point and the family had no previous complaints about Staffordshire Probation's Victims Liaison Unit.
They had told the family when Bage was de-categorised as he progressed through the prison system and contacted them before the parole board met to consider his release on licence.
Mr Stanyer said the answerphone message had "blotted their copybook" and they would be writing to the Parole Board for England and Wales to complain about the ways the news was broken to them.
They also want clarification of the terms of Bage's release, including a ban on him returning to north Staffordshire. Bage is understood to be in an open prison in the North-east of England and will be released in the Durham area.
Mr Stanyer added: "(The murder) is something we have lived with for the last 14 years, but to be told the final outcome over the phone with a voice message is not very sincere or sympathetic."
Muriel Lawrence, assistant chief officer of Staffordshire Probation Area, said they could not comment on individual cases. But she added: "We can confirm that the probation service's victims' unit is involved with victims of serious crime and provides affected families with ongoing contact, including information about a prisoner's release plans."