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MURDER TRIAL: Four 'cruelly ended Tristram Wallace's life', says judge

JAILED: Neil Potter, Peter Mallon, Donna Windsor and Toney Jelf.
JAILED: Neil Potter, Peter Mallon, Donna Windsor and Toney Jelf.

THESE are the four people who have been jailed for more than 50 years for the killing of Tristram Wallace.

Sentending Neil Potter, 36, Peter Mallon, 41, Donna Windsor, 38, and Toney Jelf, 39, at Birmingham Crown Court earlier today, Tuesday, the judge told them they 'cruelly ended' Mr Wallace's life.

"He died in pain and fear at the side of the road. Mr Wallace's life was cruelly ended because you wrongly thought he was a cheating drug dealer," Mr Justice Timothy Holroyde said.

"Every crime of homicide ends one life but brings misery to others. So on this case the family of Tristram Wallace are left to mourn his death and to live with the knowledge of how he died.

"They have been present in court to hear the evidence. Their anguish is clearly expressed in the personal statements of Mr Wallace's mother and grandmother."

Potter and Mallon were convicted of 36-year-old carpet fitter Mr Wallace's murder.

Windsor was cleared of murder, but had previously admitted manslaughter.

The jury could not reach a verdict on the murder charge faced by Jelf, but he also previously admitted manslaughter.

Potter, 36, of Clopton Road, Stratford, was sentenced to life in prison with a minimum of 18 years, and Mallon, of Rumer Close, Long Marston, to a minimum of 16 years.

Jelf, 39, of no fixed abode, was sentenced to nine years and four months and Windsor, 37,of Betjemen Close, Stratford, to ten years.

A fifth person to be arrested in the immediate aftermath of Mr Wallace's death, Florence Caines, 26, Wellesbourne, pleaded guilty in September last year to the theft of his mobile phone.

She was not sentenced until today and was given eight months, but served more than that on remand.

Addressing the defendants before they were sentenced Mr Wallace's mother, Stephanie Addavide, told them: "Tristram was our only child and our world, you have not only destroyed his life but ours as well."

During the trial the jury were told how the group subjected Mr Wallace to a savage attack in broad daylight at the junction of Birmingham Road and Arden Street, raining down punches and kicks as he lay on the floor.

The jury were told that the group continued to attack Mr Wallace as he tried to escape across the street and were also said to have rifled through Mr Wallace’s pockets as he lay bleeding on the ground.

A post mortem showed Mr Wallace suffered a broken nose, an internal tear to his abdomen and cuts and bruises to his face, body, arms and legs following the attack.

However a forensic pathologist told the court none of the injuries were themselves fatal and his death was probably triggered by Mr Wallace inhaling his own vomit, resulting in a lack of oxygen in the blood, combined with the stress of the attack.

Detective Chief Inspector Jason Downes, from Warwickshire Police, said: "None of the defendants have shown any remorse for the despicable, prolonged attack which ended Tristram's life and the sentence handed to the defendants today will not bring him back or take away the trauma, pain and suffering caused to his family."

See Thursday’s Stratford-upon-Avon Herald for a full report from the sentencing hearing and more reaction.

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