THE sentences handed down to two men for the murder of Jonathan Fitchett have been welcomed by those who brought them to justice.
Gerard Childs and Stephen Price, both aged 28, have been convicted of murdering the 22-year-old after an argument broke out at Cables Retail Park in Prescot last July.
Mr Fitchett, who suffered serious head injuries, died a day later in Whiston Hospital.
Childs, of King Edward Road, Rainhill, and Price, from Hayes Avenue in Prescot, were sentenced to 10 years and 11 years respectively.
Speaking after the sentencing, Det Chief Insp Steve Cox said: “This was a despicable and cowardly attack on a young man that resulted in his death. There is no place in our communities for people who commit such violent and horrendous crimes.
“The sentencing of Childs and Price today should bring home to them the enormity of what they have done, and the pain and heartache they have caused Jonathan’s family and friends and our thoughts are with them.
“I would like to thank the investigation team and the Crown Prosecution Service for their professionalism and commitment throughout this investigation and their hard work in bringing this case to court.”
Gary Simpson Senior, Crown Prosecutor with the Crown Prosecution Service Mersey-Cheshire, said: “Jonathan Fitchett was subjected to a deadly and sustained attack by Childs and Price in a busy shopping centre on a sunny summer’s day.
“It happened during an extremely busy part of the day with lots of shoppers and pedestrians around who were undoubtedly horrified by the assault.
“The prosecution successfully disproved Childs and Price’s claims that they were acting in self-defence.
“Several witnesses confirmed they had seen the men punching and kicking Jonathan who was unable to defend himself.
“The hard work of the Crown Prosecution Service and Merseyside Police has brought these two violent men to justice. They are now behind bars, and Jonathan’s family must struggle to come to terms with their loss.”