Sunday, May 23, 2010

Homeless man killed for his cigarettes









Ralph Millward, 41, was a well-known figure in Bournemouth, referred to affectionately as the town’s "most familiar face." He sold the Big Issue to try to make ends meet.


Three teenagers beat a homeless man to death for refusing to hand over his tobacco.

Jimmy Ayres, 15, Craig Real and Warren Crago, both 17, attacked homeless Ralph Millward and dumped his body in bushes in Bournemouth, England. They then boasted to friends they did it 'for a laugh'.

After a five-week trial, the jury took just two hours to find them guilty of manslaughter.

Millward had previously given cigarettes to one of the boys, the court heard. On the evening of May 7 last year, Ayres, Real and Crago had been drinking large quantities of cider at a friend's flat. When they ran out of cigarettes, they went in search of Millward but he refused to hand over any tobacco.

They then brutally punched and stamped on him. Millward was left for dead with ten fractured ribs, a ruptured spleen and bleeding to the brain. After the attack, Crago and Real returned with a shopping trolley to continue the assault.

Millward's body was discovered under the trolley in nearby bushes early the next day by two outreach workers.

Ultimately, it was three teenagers who brought each other down during the trial. In attempting to minimize their own involvement, the boys all readily told of the violence dished out by their friends.

The three boys will be sentenced next month.

They can be identified because Judge Guy Boney said their actions were so "frankly appalling" that it was in the public interest to know what they had done.

Read the Bournemouth Daily Echo report here.

1 Comments:

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