Beds, Herts & Bucks

Man jailed for friend's Bedford hotel punch death

Mark Munday and the Grafton Hotel in Bedford Image copyright South Beds News Agency
Image caption Mark Munday was punched in the head in the Grafton Hotel in Bedford

A man who killed his friend with a single punch during an argument in a pub has been jailed for five years.

Nigel Williams, 39, of Olney, Buckinghamshire, attacked father-of-three Mark Munday, 48, in the Grafton Hotel in Bedford in December.

Mr Munday, from Kempston, died a few hours later from a bleed on the brain.

Williams, who admitted manslaughter, was jailed at Luton Crown Court, where the judge told him he had "ended one life.. and destroyed others' lives".

The court heard the pair had been friends for 14 years and had gone on holidays together.

Image copyright SBNA
Image caption Nigel Williams was jailed for five years for killing his friend with a single blow to the head

However, following a football match in London on 3 December, the West Ham fans fell out and friends had to keep them apart.

Several hours later Williams went to the pub in Midland Road, where Mr Munday was drinking and delivered the fatal blow.

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Judge Michael Kay QC was told the impact of the single punch to the side of Mr Munday's head caused his neck to twist so violently that an artery at the base of his skull tore, resulting in the haemorrhage.

Williams was initially charged with murder, but a guilty plea to the lesser charge of manslaughter was accepted by the prosecution at a previous hearing.

Det Insp Alan Page, from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, and Hertfordshire major crime unit, described Mr Munday's death as "heart-breaking".

"What makes this case even more tragic is how preventable it was.

"Just one single moment of madness has forever changed the course of so many lives."

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