Two men face life sentences for brutal killing of Sunderland dad David Walsh

David Walsh
David Walsh

Two men are facing life sentences for the brutal murder of a dad who was killed when he went to intervene in a violent attack on his son.

David Walsh suffered 34 stab wounds and cuts, as well as a number of other injuries, during a savage back lane beating at the hands of an armed mob, who used an "assortment" of weapons.

The 45-year-old, who had the nickname Boff, died as a result of massive blood loss from stab wounds and cuts to major blood vessels linked to the heart, lungs and kidneys.

After a trial, lasting more than four weeks, at Newcastle Crown Court Charles Lamont, 40, of Villette Road, Sunderland, was convicted of murder and violent disorder, which he had denied throughout.

Raymond Brown, 37, of Canon Cockin Street, Sunderland, who was seen to inflict multiple stab wounds, had already pleaded guilty to the same charges and both men now face mandatory life terms when Mr Justice Globe sentences them on Monday.

The judge said the sentence will be life imprisonment in both cases but added: "I do have to set the minimum term that needs to be served as part of that life sentence."

Lamont's son Dalton Barnett, of Fuller Road in the city, was cleared of murder but convicted of manslaughter and violent disorder.

The 19-year-old, who had denied all charges, will also learn his fate at the hearing on Monday.

Patrick Duggan, 19, of Palmstead Place, Sunderland, was earlier cleared of murder, manslaughter and violent disorder after the trial.

He had admitted being at the scene of the killing and being sickened by what he saw but denied any involvement. He was visibly relieved as the jury foreman delivered the verdicts.

The court heard during the trial Mr Walsh had gone to the lane between Canon Cockin Street and Fuller Road in Hendon, Sunderland, on November 20 last year when he found out his son David Richardson, aka Walsh, was being assaulted.

Mr Walsh, who was described in court as a "big strong man", wanted to know "who had done this to his son", was angry and ready to fight, the court heard.

The court heard violence involving a number of men broke out in the lane, one of whom was knocked unconscious by Mr Walsh.

Mr Walsh was then subjected to a deadly attack using weapons.

Mr Walsh's other son Kyle Richardson, aka Walsh, who drove him to the scene, saw the aftermath of the savagery used on his dad.

Prosecutor Robert Smith QC told the court: "He could see one of his father's arms was very badly cut.

"He had a large cut to his abdomen, from which his intestines were protruding.

"There was so much blood it was difficult for him to see the extent of his father's injuries.

"Kyle Walsh tried to find a pulse but could find nothing.

"He stood there, shouting 'look at the state of him, look what you have done to him'.

"Those responsible had gone."

Mr Smith told jurors at least one knife, possibly a machete, as well as a crow bar, a metal tool and a broom handle were among the weapons used during the violence.

The court heard a witness who could see the murder scene from his home, saw Brown thrust a knife into Mr Walsh and keep it in as "he was going down".

The violence then continued, despite severe stab wounds already being inflicted.

Brown confessed during a phone call the day after the killing that he was frightened when the violence broke out and had "stabbed" and "gutted" Mr Walsh.

Mr Smith added: "During the attack on Mr Walsh, he suffered a total of 34 separate injuries by way of stabs or cuts to the body and also suffered a number of blunt force injuries.

"The injuries by way of stabs and cuts proved to be fatal as a result of massive blood loss."

The court heard Mr Walsh had injuries to his ribs and severe internal damage to his body.

Floral tributes left to David Walsh - known as 'Boff' - at his funeral

Floral tributes left to David Walsh - known as 'Boff' - at his funeral