A husband and wife from Grimsby have been sentenced to a total of 15 years in prison for the manslaughter of a homeless man.
Marc Finnie, 44 and Sarah Finnie, 36, of Sutcliffe Avenue in Grimsby were sentenced after the death of 45-year-old Tony Richardson in the town on January 15 2018.
Mr Finnie is said to have attacked the victim in a busy shopping street in Grimsby town centre using his right knee and fists.
This caused a serious head injury to the victim, who died the following day.
Marc Finnie received an eight year sentence and his wife Sarah, who “initiated, encouraged and assisted” the attack, was jailed for seven years.
A statement from Tony Richardson’s family, who have been asked to be left alone at this difficult time, said: “Tony did not lead a blame free life and was not an angel but he was a good person at heart.
“He suffered with drug and alcohol addiction for many years which caused him to stray onto the wrong side of the tracks on occasion but he was good natured and caring.
“He could on occasion be verbally abusive and cause upset but he was not an aggressive or violent man.
“Tony was a well-known figure in the town with a wide circle of friends. Despite his lifestyle he was popular and harmless. He did not deserve to be attacked and killed for what he said in an argument.
“Despite his faults, Tony was a gentle man who was well known and well liked. He was well loved by his mum and his family, who all miss him.
“Finally, we would like to thank Humberside Police, the Crown Prosecution Service and the prosecuting barristers for their work in bringing the people who killed Tony to court to answer for their actions.”
Detective Chief Inspector Stewart Miller at Humberside Police added: “I would like to begin by expressing my condolences to the family and friends of Tony Richardson.
“This was a tragic incident, that saw Marc and Sarah Finnie take the law into their own hands in an attempt to take revenge against Mr Richardson, who had verbally abused and intimidated Sarah Finnie in her role as a Security Duty Manager at Freshney Place over a long period of time.
“As a result Tony was violently attacked by Marc Finnie in a busy shopping street in Grimsby town centre in the late afternoon of January 15. The level of violence involved went way beyond what you would expect from a husband confronting a man who had been verbally abusing his wife.
“He attacked Tony with his right knee and his fists. As a result, Tony sustained a serious head injury and died the following day.
“The attack was initiated, encouraged and assisted by Sarah Finnie who used her position in the Freshney Place security team to guide her husband in to where the victim was sat and ensure a CCTV camera covering the scene of the attack was pointing the other way at the time.
“As her husband fled, Sarah tried to cover up their involvement.
“Tony paid the ultimate price and our thoughts are now with his family and loved ones, who have lost a much-loved son, brother, father and friend.
“I’d like to thank the public who came forward with information to assist in our investigation and also offer reassurance to those living and working in Grimsby Town centre that this was an isolated, targeted attack, with no wider risk to the public.
“The incident was swiftly and thoroughly investigated resulting in the successful outcome at court today. I hope the sentences act as a deterrent to future violence in the town centre.
“I would like to thank the team who worked on this investigation, quickly identifying what had happened, arresting those responsible and gathering the evidence to secure these convictions for manslaughter.
“Finally I would like to thank Tony’s family for the dignified way they have behaved during the investigation and judicial process. This has been an awful few months for them and I hope today’s sentences can bring them some small amount of solace and closure to allow them to grieve and move forward.”