Teen convicted of murdering pensioner with hammer

Liverpool Crown Court
Liverpool Crown Court
Share this article

A teenager has been convicted of murdering a pensioner with a claw hammer.

Liverpool Crown Court heard that Richard Percival, 71, of Dixon Avenue was killed by the 17 year old boy in August last year.

The boy, who can’t be named because of his age, admitted the manslaughter of Mr Percival but denied murder. The defendant also pleaded guilty to the theft of cash from Mr Percival after he had killed him. He was found guilty of murder after a trial.

The defendant claimed that he attacked Mr Percival because he had made sexual advances to him.

The court heard that the youth was homeless and sometimes spent time at Mr Percival’s house and did odd jobs for him.

The youth admitted that he was a regular drug user and admitted taking a cocktail of strong drugs in the hours after he had killed Mr Percival.

Neighbours alerted the police on August 18 when they hadn't seen Mr. Percival and noticed that his curtains were still drawn in the middle of the day.

Police forced entry into his home and found him dead. A pathologist’s report later confirmed the cause of death as a lethal blow to his head.

Friends of the youth contacted the police and told them that he’d confessed to killing someone and had been acting in a manic way, as if he was on drugs.

The youth was finally found in Oak Avenue in Earlestown, where he jumped out from behind a car in front of a police patrol and said, “You're looking for me". He was cautioned and arrested on suspicion of murder. He made further admissions to the killing in interview.

Angela Rowan, Senior Crown Prosecutor with MerseyCheshire Crown Prosecution Service said: “This was a brutal attack on a defenceless man who was a lot older than the defendant.

“The defendant had argued that he was frightened that Mr Percival was going to make sexual advances to him and that he “lost control”. However, the actions of the defendant, both before and after the murder and the extent of the violent and sustained attack upon Mr Percival, made it possible for the Crown Prosecution Service to disprove this.

“The jury has found him guilty of murder and the youth is now facing a long prison term. He will be sentenced on April 27 2018. The Crown Prosecution Service would like to extend condolences to the family of Mr Percival and hope that the result of this prosecution helps them in some way.”