Jail for man who killed former Sunderland soldier in 'dare' that went wrong at Catterick Garrison

Craig Guy
Craig Guy

A man who killed a former soldier from Wearside in a "dare" that went fatally wrong has been jailed for more than seven years.

Craig Guy, 34, died from stab wounds at The Beacon, a centre for homeless veterans in Catterick Garrison, north Yorkshire, on April 13.

Ian McLaughlin

Ian McLaughlin

Mr Guy was from Washington, and had also lived in the Southwick area of Sunderland.

Ian Bevan McLaughlin, 52, of Marne Road, Gatterick Garrison, was charged with Mr Guy's murder.

McLaughlin's plea to manslaughter was accepted by prosecutors at Teesside Crown Court.

Prosecutor Nick Lumley QC told the court the two men were friends.

"They and a group had gathered in the defendant's flat," said Mr Lumley.

"The defendant, who had been discharged from the army, had wrongly told his friend he had cancer, and had little time to live.

"Later in the evening, Mr Guy picked up a 12cm bladed knife and asked the defendant what it was for.

"The defendant said its purpose was to stab Mr Guy, a comment none of those present took seriously.

"In what witnesses describe as 'banter', Mr Guy dared the defendant to stab him."

Reading from a witness statement, Mr Lumley said: "He stuck it into the left part of Craig's chest, and took it straight out, it was all very quick.

"Craig held his chest, then I saw some blood.

"Craig was still stood up, he was laughing, and said 'good craic' . It was all very weird."

Another witness said Mr Guy seemed 'joyous' about what had happened.

He thanked McLaughlin, shook his hand, and said he had 'real respect' for him.

The court was told the knife traveled through Mr Guy's chest and rib cartilage, fatally piercing his heart.

McLaughlin was heavily intoxicated when arrested.

When sober enough to be interviewed, he told police he had only intended to "prick" Mr Guy's chest.

The Recorder of Middlesbrough, Judge Simon Bourne-Arton QC, jailed McLaughlin for seven years and four months.

The recorder said the sentence would have been 11 years had McLaughlin not pleaded guilty.

Speaking after case, Detective Chief Inpsector Andrea Kell of the Cleveland and North Yorkshire Major Investigation Team, said: "McLaughlin has been jailed for more than seven years, but for Craig Guy's family the sentence will never end.

"He was taken from them suddenly in the most cruel way.

"Craig thought McLaughlin was his friend, he introduced McLaughlin to his family only days before his death.

"This has made it even more difficult for Craig's family to comprehend his subsequent actions in killing their son, and depriving their grandson of a life with his father.

"McLaughlin is cold and callous, he lied to us during the investigation, and he lied to family and friends all his life.

"I am satisfied he is where he belongs - behind bars."