Father, 32, gets 19 years in prison for stabbing burglar to death after running home when doorbell camera warned him that his property had been broken into by a man searching for a drug stash
- A jury acquits Karl Townsend, 32, of the murder of Jordan Brophy, 31, last October
- Townsend was found guilty of manslaughter in an attack outside Merseyside’s home
- Townsend stabbed Brophy repeatedly in the head, face and arms on the attack
A father who stabbed a burglar to death after seeing him break into doorbell images has been jailed for 19 years.
A jury acquitted 32-year-old Karl Townsend of the murder of Jordan Brophy, 31, outside his home in Halewood, Merseyside, on October 29 last year, but found him guilty of manslaughter.
Brophy and three others had attacked Townsend’s home while he, his partner and child were away, intent on committing a “smash and grab” burglary to steal a stash of controlled drugs.
Judge Andrew Menary QC, who sentenced him to Liverpool Crown Court on Friday, said: ‘Jordan Brophy was no angel, he had a number of previous convictions and was being investigated for other cases at the time.
“Whatever he did that night, he clearly didn’t deserve to die the way he did.”
A jury acquitted Karl Townsend (left), 32, of the murder of Jordan Brophy (right) 31, outside his home in Halewood, Merseyside, on October 29 last year, but found him guilty of manslaughter
The court heard that the burglars arrived at the property in a convoy of vehicles and had an escape driver outside.
Their arrival was picked up by cameras via a Ring doorbell app and Townsend returned to his house with a large kitchen knife, along with his younger half-brother Jamie Cunningham, who also carried a knife.
Townsend repeatedly stabbed Mr Brophy in the head, face and arms inside the property, before stabbing him in the neck again on the road outside, the court heard.
A sob was heard from the public gallery as the judge described the injuries to Mr Brophy.
He said, “On every level, the illegal violence you used was truly shocking.”
In a statement she read to the court, Mr. Brophy’s mother, Lisa Ward, said, “Jordan was by no means perfect and innocent, but no one ever had the right to take it from me.”
She said Mr Brophy had taken the ‘wrong road in life’ after losing a job at Jaguar Land Rover, where he had worked with her, and experiencing mental health issues.
She said that after waiting more than two years for a mental health referral, he had an appointment with a psychiatrist on Nov. 4, but died before he could come.
Anesta Weekes QC, on the defensive, said the incident started with the ‘unlawful trespassing’ of Townsend’s home by three men.
She said, “His business was that he wanted them gone. What he never expected was that he had his own knife with him to use on someone else, so that the people in the house could carry weapons.’
In the photo: police and forensic officers at the scene of the stabbing in October last year
Members of Mr Brophy’s family gasped when Ms Weekes said there may be no defensive injuries on Mr Townsend because he was “better at defending himself”.
But Judge Menary said he discovered Mr Brophy was not armed with a weapon when he was attacked by Townsend.
He said, “He didn’t expect a confrontation.”
About 10 members of Mr. Brophy’s family sat in the public gallery for the hearing and cheered as the verdict was announced.
Townsend shrugged at members of his own family as he left port.
He was sentenced to a concurrent two-year sentence for possession of a knife article.
Cunningham, 23, of Penmann Crescent, Halewood, who had been acquitted of murder and manslaughter in a previous trial, was given a two-year suspended prison sentence, with 10 days of rehabilitation activity, after pleading guilty halfway through possession of a knife . through a resit.