June 22, 2021 4.07 pm This story is over 13 months old

Life in prison for Skegness murderer

A jury convicted him by a majority of 10 to 2

A Skegness man who stabbed a former friend and then ran away leaving his victim with a fatal injury was jailed for life at Lincoln Crown Court.

Paul Bodell was ordered to serve a minimum of 21 years before he can be considered for parole.

Bodell had claimed to a jury that he simply pushed his victim Paul Barnett, 45, after Mr Barnett went for him with a golf club during an incident in Grosvenor Road, Skegness.

Paul Barnett died on September 22. | Photo: Lincolnshire Police

He said what happened was an accident and denied he intended to either murder Mr Barnett or cause him really serious harm.

But the jury convicted him of murder by a majority of 10 to 2 following a trial earlier this year.

Bodell, 38, of Grosvenor Road, Skegness, denied the murder of Paul Barnett on September 22, 2020.

The court was told that Bodell had two previous convictions for offences which involved the use of a knife.

Police put a cordon in place on Grosvenor Road in Skegness. | Photo: John Byford

Judge John Pini QC told him: “The sentence I impose is mandated by law and that is life imprisonment.”

The judge said he could not be sure that Bodell intended to kill Mr Barnett rather than cause him really serious harm.

Judge Pini added that a letter submitted by Bodell following his conviction indicated he is remorseful for what happened.

During the three week trial Andrew Vout QC, prosecuting, told the jury: “It was not an accident. It was a vicious intentional blow with a lethal weapon. It was murder.”

He said the two men had been friends but fell out before the fatal incident. Paul Barnett complained that Bodell had taken his door keys off him and he wanted them back while Bodell believed Mr Barnett owed him £40.

Mr Vout said that Bodell concealed a large kitchen knife up his sleeve before seeking a confrontation with Mr Barnett in the street where both men lived.

“Paul Bodell stabbed Paul Barnett with such ferocity that the knife went through the left side of his chest, damaged his ribs, went through his lung, went through one of the arteries emerging from Mr Barnett’s heart and entered into and damaged his spinal bones.

“Having inflicted this terrible wound Paul Bodell ran away disposing of his knife as he ran. Within minutes Paul Barnett would be dead.”

Mr Vout said that after being stabbed Mr Barnett stumbled backwards and fell against a parked car before slumping to the floor. He was bleeding heavily but managed to make it back to his nearby flat.

People tried to help him and the emergency services were called but he passed away.

The following morning Bodell went to Skegness Police Station where he was arrested. He was later interviewed by officers on four occasions but made no comment to questions put to him.

Michael Duck QC, in mitigation, said Bodell inflicted a single blow with the knife and had not followed up with any further blows.

“He has in the past been in trouble and plainly has on occasion had a problem with amphetamine.

“This is a man who knows he is going to spend a substantial time in custody. He has expressed remorse in his letter.”