Birmingham & Black Country

PC Chris Findley death: Dale Dixon, 19, sentenced

Chris Findley
Image caption PC Chris Findley died in hospital from severe brain injuries

A teenager who killed an off-duty police officer has been sentenced to three-and-a-half years in a young offenders institution.

PC Chris Findley, 33, suffered severe head injuries in the attack outside Divine Bar nightclub in Wolverhampton on 28 January.

He was left unconscious in the road and died in hospital 10 days later.

Dale Dixon, 19, from Wednesfield had pleaded guilty to manslaughter at Wolverhampton Crown Court.

The court was played CCTV footage which showed Dixon, from New Heath Close, sprinting towards PC Findley and punching him in the face, causing him to fall backwards.

His nose was broken in three places and he was knocked unconscious.

The court heard the punch was thrown after PC Findley had pushed a woman who had attacked him outside the club in Darlington Street at about 04:00 GMT.

'Infectious personality'

Sentencing Dixon, Judge John Warner, said: "An innocent man has unnecessarily and tragically lost his life.

"You had no intention of causing really serious injury, let alone anything worse but, as a result of your violent action, a man has died."

Image caption Dale Dixon had pleaded guilty to manslaughter

PC Findley's mother Jackie Tabrett said she would "never come to terms" with his death.

"He joined [the police] to keep people safe and protect them from harm and to put those individuals responsible for committing crime into the justice system," she said.

"It's hard to believe that one of those people is responsible for taking my son's life."

West Midlands Police said PC Findley, who was single, had worked in neighbourhood police teams in Sandwell.

Ch Supt Mark Robinson said he had a "warm, infectious personality and sense of humour".

He said. "Chris was a proactive, hard-working officer who was a credit to the service and the communities of Sandwell. He will be sadly missed."

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