Tees

Middlesbrough cousins jailed over post-wake stab death

(Left to right) Kieran Ibitson, Dominic Pickering, Mark Pickering Image copyright Cleveland Police
Image caption Kieran Ibitson (left) was convicted of murder and Dominic Pickering and Mark Pickering were found guilty of manslaughter

Three men have been jailed after their cousin was killed in a brawl following a family funeral.

Kieran Ibitson, fatally stabbed Steven Willis, 27, during a confrontation in Middlesbrough in April.

The 21-year-old was convicted of murder at Teesside Crown Court and jailed for life with a minimum term of 22 years.

His cousins Dominic Pickering, 23, and Mark Pickering, 32, were cleared of murder but found guilty of manslaughter and were each sentenced to 10 years.

The trial was told that tensions had boiled over when the extended family attended a wake at a social club in North Ormesby.

Image copyright Family handout
Image caption Steven Willis was described as a "loving young man with a huge heart"

Afterwards, the three cousins went to the home of their uncle, John Pickering - the father of Steven Willis - and attacked him when he came outside.

Mr Willis went to his aid but was himself fatally stabbed.

Det Insp Mark Dimelow, of Cleveland Police, said: "Kieran Ibitson was armed with a knife and was intent on causing serious injury to those at this address.

"He had gathered a group together to help him carry out his violence.

"Sadly, as a result, Steven Willis lost his life and his children have lost their father."

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