Man Jailed for Coventry Nightclub Murder
April 11, 2016, 3:29 pm
A man has today been jailed for stabbing an 18-year-old to death at a Coventry nightclub.
Tobijah Thompson, of no fixed address, was found guilty of the murder of teenager Daniel Kirkwood at Society nightclub in Tower Street on 15 March 2015 following a nine week trial.
Appearing at Leamington Justice Centre today he was jailed for life to serve a minimum of 32 years.
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Three other men, Hasham Ali, of Amberley Green in Birmingham, Ezra Scott, of Hawksyard Road in Erdington, and Ramez Murtaza of Bordesley Green East in Bordesley Green, pleaded guilty to being involved in the violent disorder that resulted in Danielâ€™s death. Murtaza also admitted assaulting Danielâ€™s friend and pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
Ali was sentenced to 29 months and Scott was handed 28 months for violent disorder.
Murtaza was sentenced to 8 years for manslaughter, he was also sentenced to three years and four months for violent disorder and two years and 10 months for an assault.
Daniel, 18, died after being stabbed in the neck at the night spot in Tower Street while out celebrating his friendâ€™s birthday.
During the trial the jury were told how Daniel and his friends became involved in a verbal argument with Ali, aged 19, which escalated into disorder when unemployed 25-year-old Thompson pulled out a knife in front of horrified clubbers.
He stabbed Daniel in the neck before attacking two of his friends â€“ stabbing one in the arm and another in the back.
Murtaza, aged 21, then used a broken bottle to threaten the group and grappled with another of Danielâ€™s friends leaving him injured.
The injured teenagers managed to get out of the club but as they reached the road outside Daniel collapsed.
The teenager lay critically injured as Thompson, Ali, Murtaza and Scott, aged 22, left the area in a silver BMW shouting abuse at the group as they left.
The other three teens received medical treatment for their injuries.
Thompson was also convicted of violent disorder, possession of a knife, assault and two separate counts of woundings.
A fifth man, Zaker Khan of Belchers Lane in Small Heath, was found not guilty of violent disorder and assault.
Detective Chief Inspector Sam Ridding, who led the murder investigation, said: â€œThe motive for the attack is believed to have been a disagreement that Ali had with one of Danielâ€™s friends in the club.
â€œThe violence very quickly escalated with Thompson stabbing Daniel and his friends with a knife heâ€™d brought with him as he and the other offenders breezed past security who let them in without searching them.
â€œThis was a devastating attack against the group and we are satisfied with the results at court today.â€
Speaking about her son, Danielâ€™s mum Pauline Darcy, said: â€œDan was the brightest star in our family, he was always laughing, joking and had the biggest smile that everyone noticed.
â€œDanielâ€™s adult life was just starting, he had plans but these were cruelly taken away from him, we will never see his pride in getting married and starting a family.
â€œDanâ€™s dad Michael and I are two broken people, changed beyond recognition, the days are dark, the house is empty, the hopes and dreams for our sonâ€™s future are gone.
â€œHis brother and sisters are devastated and his nieces and nephew miss their uncle Dan. He changed peopleâ€™s lives in his 18 years and we are so proud of him.
â€œOur thanks go to West Midlands Police and all the staff who have worked on the case with such dedication and professionalism and to Michael Burrows QC for his eloquent presentation of the case.â€
Detective Chief Inspector Ridding added: â€œDaniel was a young man with the world at his feet. His premature death was needless and the loss has torn apart the lives of his family and friends.
â€œThey will never recover from their ordeal but I hope that in some way seeing Danielâ€™s killer behind bars will help them.
â€œI hope that todayâ€™s sentencing reinforces he message that there is no place for people who wish to carry knives in our communities and anyone found to be doing so will be brought to justice.â€
Source: West Midlands Police