HMA v DEAN HADDOW

Today at the High Court in Glasgow Lord Matthews sentenced Dean Haddow to four years and three months imprisonment after he pled guilty to the culpable homicide of Stephen Gormley on the 25 April 2010 in Cambuslang, Glasgow.

On sentencing Lord Matthews made the following statement in court:

“I have listened carefully to what has been said on your behalf by Mr Jackson and I also take account of your age and the information contained in the social enquiry report.

This is a very tragic case involving the death of your half brother, a young man with whom you had formed a close relationship and with whom you could have expected to spend many happy years together. No words of mine and indeed no sentence I can pass can bring him back or alleviate the suffering his family must feel at his passing.

Sentencing in cases of culpable homicide can be an extremely challenging exercise. At one extreme end sentences of many years imprisonment can be imposed where the circumstances disclose a high degree of violence. At the other extreme non custodial sentences can occasionally be imposed. I have to approach this case on the basis that the violence used was not sustained. No fractures resulted and on another day it might be that only minor injury would have been caused and although the two of you had been fighting after consuming alcohol I have no doubt that had matters not  taken the turn which they did you would have continued to be friends. Nonetheless what was done had the consequences which bring us here, although I recognise that no weapons were used

Had this matter gone to trial I would have imposed a sentence of six years detention. In view of your early plea that sentence will be one of detention for four years and three months to run from 28 April 2010.

In your case Linzi Easter, the Crown has accepted a plea of guilty to a minor assault which played no part in Mr Gormley’s untimely death. I have listened to everything said on your behalf by Mr Findlay. You have spent a number of months in custody awaiting trial, which is equivalent to a longer sentence than would have been appropriate for what you did. In the circumstances you are admonished”.

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