Man guilty of murdering Daniel Kirkwood in Society club Coventry

From top left to bottom right: Tobijah Thompson, Ramez Murtaza, Hasham Ali and Ezra Scott
Image caption From top left to bottom right: Tobijah Thompson, Ramez Murtaza, Hasham Ali and Ezra Scott

A man has been found guilty of murder after stabbing an 18-year-old in the neck in a row over a girl.

Tobijah Thompson, 25, murdered Daniel Kirkwood at Society nightclub in Coventry exactly a year ago.

Hasham Ali, 19, Ezra Scott, 22 and Ramez Murtaza, 21, pleaded guilty to violent disorder over the fight which resulted in Daniel's death.

All four men from Birmingham will return to Warwick Crown Court for sentencing in 11 April.

Murtaza pleaded guilty to manslaughter and assault.

Zaker Khan, 25, of Belchers Lane, Small Heath, was found not guilty of violent disorder and assault.

Mr Kirkwood was with a group celebrating a friend's birthday when a fight broke out in the club, the court was told.

One of Thompson's circle had taken exception to one of Mr Kirkwood's friends chatting to a girl he had been talking to, the jury heard during a nine-week trial.

Image caption Daniel Kirkwood was found outside the Society Club in March

Thompson was armed with a knife after he had his friends "breezed past security who let them in without searching them," said DCI Sam Ridding, who led the murder investigation.

Thompson stabbed Mr Kirkwood in the neck, Niall Kavanagh, 17, in the arm and Nigel Mkhwananzi, 18, in the back.

He assaulted Christopher O'Brien whose birthday it was.

A jury unanimously convicted Thompson of murder.

He was also convicted of two counts of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Thompson, of no fixed address, was also found guilty of violent disorder and possession of a knife in a public place.

Ali from Amberley Green, Murtaza, of Bordesley Green East, Bordesley Green and Scott of Hawksyard Road, Erdington were part of the fight.

Image caption The court heard a fight erupted between the defendants, Mr Kirkwood and his friends

Tribute to Daniel Kirkwood by his mother Pauline Darcy

"Dan was the brightest star in our family, he was always laughing, joking and had the biggest smile that everyone noticed.

"Daniel'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.

"Dan'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 son's future are gone.

"His brother and sisters are devastated and his nieces and nephew miss their uncle Dan. He changed people's lives in his 18 years and we are so proud of him."

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