Stoke & Staffordshire

Two plead guilty to Leonard Holmes manslaughter

Jacob Havard and Matthew Fereday Image copyright Staffordshire Police
Image caption Jacob Havard (left) and Matthew Fereday pleaded guilty to manslaughter and attempted robbery

Two men have pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of a Stoke-on-Trent man who died 10 months after an assault.

Jacob Havard, 22, of Brittain Avenue, Newcastle-under-Lyme, and Matthew Fereday, 24, of Moorland View, Bradeley, are accused of attacking Leonard Holmes in April 2014.

Both men also pleaded guilty to the attempted robbery of the 60-year-old.

They were remanded in custody and will appear at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court at a later date.

Before the trial both men pleaded not guilty to the murder of Mr Holmes, but guilty to manslaughter and attempted robbery. This was accepted by the prosecution.

Image copyright Staffordshire Police
Image caption Leonard Holmes had been out celebrating with family members before he was assaulted

Mr Holmes was attacked in the early hours of 5 April on Brownley Road, at the junction with Community Drive in Smallthorne, as he made his way home from a family night out.

He suffered head and facial injuries and died in hospital on 3 February. He never regained consciousness.

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