Man jailed for killing Norfolk father-of-two during street fight
PUBLISHED: 09:02 10 March 2018 | UPDATED: 12:15 10 March 2018
A man who killed a “defenceless” father-of-two from Heacham with a kick to the head during a street fight has been jailed for five years.
Nathan Turner, 24, of Myrtle Road, Brentwood, was sentenced at Chelmsford Crown Court.
He had previously pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Dean Jose, 47, who was killed by a kick to the head after he had been knocked unconscious in a late night fight in Kings Road, Brentwood on August 27 last year.
Known as ‘Deano’ to his friends, Mr Jose had grown up in the London Borough of Havering before moving to Norfolk.
He had been back in the area to attend a charity event with his wife when he was involved in the confrontation, which CCTV shows began between a group of young girls – one as young as 13 – and his wife, Maxine.
The cause of this argument was never revealed to the court.
Turner, who was there to pick up the girls, then arrived at the scene as the passenger of a black BMW.
The confrontation between Mrs Jose and the girls deteriorated to the point where Mrs Jose was seen to be leaning into the car in an attempt “to get at” the girls.
At this point Turner got out of the car, and a confrontation began between him and Mr Jose, in which Mr Jose was seen to throw the first punch.
The fight spilled across the road, and ended when Turned either kneed or punched Mr Jose to the ground.
Once there, he delivered a final kick to Mr Jose’s jaw – the blow that forensic pathologists ruled caused serious head injuries that Mr Jose ultimately died from five days later.
Passing sentence, Judge Charles Gratwicke accepted that Turner had shown remorse for his actions that night, but stressed they were still extremely serious.
He said: “Anyone looking at the CCTV cannot feel anything but sickness and revulsion at seeing you kick him to the head as he lay defenceless in the street.
“This was a piece of gratuitous violence meted out by you.”
In a statement he read to the court, Mr Jose’s brother Christopher spoke of the “living nightmare” the Jose family had gone through during the five days Dean lay in hospital with what were described as “catastrophic injuries”.
He relived the moment a specialist told him his brother would die the next day, and described hearing Dean’s two young daughters at the bedside “screaming for daddy to come back”.
“The girls will never have their father to walk them down the aisle, or give them the simple things, like a ‘squeeze’ from their dad,” he told the court.
Mr Jose’s wife felt unable to read out her own statement, in which she described how she is seeking professional help after suffering flashbacks to “the brutal and horrific attack”.
Her statement read: “No words can ever describe the pain, anger and sadness we will continue to bear without Dean by our sides.
“No sentence the court can pass today will bring back Dean to us, and no sentence can do justice to the pain and heartache caused by him no longer being in our lives.”
The court then heard a letter Turner had written to Mr Jose’s family in which he apologised for what had happened.
It said: “I understand no words can bring him back, excuse my behaviour or take your pain away.
“I think about Mr Jose and his family every day, and I was devastated to hear he had passed away.”
The court also heard of a series of previous offences, including assault occasioning actual bodily harm when he and a friend attempted to mug a man at Brentwood Rail Station in December 2013.
On that occasion Turner had again pleaded guilty to punching and kicking a man on the floor.
He had also been on bail from Basildon Crown Court at the time of Mr Jose’s death in relation to drugs offences.
Defending Turner, Michael Ivers QC insisted events that night had gained momentum so rapidly they had quickly tumbled out of control, and that the 23-year-old had never intended to kill.
Going back to the moment an argument broke out between Mrs Jose and the two girls, he said: “The defendant hadn’t sought to assault anybody, or argue with anybody.
“He hadn’t said a single word and wasn’t seen to be egging anybody else on, nothing of the sort.
“He was a man who was about to get two young girls who were involved in an argument away, and trouble came to him.”
When pressed by the judge on why Turner delivered the final kick while Mr Jose was unconscious, Mr Ivers stressed that Turner had already pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
He went on: “In a split second, he used too much force in a situation where he had been defending himself.
“He accepts in that moment he used too much force, and look at where it’s led to.”
Turner was also sentenced to 2 months’ imprisonment for one count of possession of a Class A drug and six months for a count of possession with intent to supply Class B. These sentences will run concurrently.
Mrs Jose was heard to describe the sentence as “a joke” as she left the courtroom.
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