Devon

Stephen Crook murder: Four jailed for killing Exeter drug dealer

Ryan Singleton, Anthony Martin, Steve Webster, Darren Twigger
Image caption Ryan Singleton, Anthony Martin, Steve Webster and Darren Twigger left Stephen Crook with multiple stabs

Four men have been jailed for a total of 94 years for the killing of a drug dealer who was stabbed to death during a violent robbery in his Exeter home.

Stephen Crook, 43, was stabbed 10 times, Exeter Crown Court heard.

One member of the group was found guilty of murder and robbery, with three other members convicted of manslaughter and robbery.

The court heard Mr Crook was a drug dealer who was attacked by the men in November 2013.

The gang believed their victim had £20,000 worth of heroin or cash at his flat in Alphington Road.

The men are:

  • Ryan Singleton, 26, from Coventry, convicted of murder and robbery - sentenced to 28 years
  • Steve Webster, 42, from Okehampton, convicted of manslaughter and robbery - sentenced to 24 years
  • Darren Twigger, 40, from Coventry, convicted of manslaughter and robbery - sentenced to 22 years
  • Anthony Martin, 21, from Coventry, convicted of manslaughter and robbery - sentenced to 20 years
Image caption Two members of the gang who were seen on CCTV buying knives shortly before the raid

'Vicious attack'

Mr Crook died from loss of blood after suffering multiple stab wounds during the attack in which he was forced through his flat to the bedroom, where he kept his money.

The court heard the gang were seen on CCTV buying knives shortly before the raid.

Det Insp Gregg Dawe of Devon and Cornwall Police said after the sentencing: "This was a particularly vicious and violent attack.

"Those responsible were engaged in the illicit supply of controlled drugs and were motivated by money.

"The sentences imposed should send a message and act as a deterrent to anyone involved in the illegal supply of controlled drugs and the violence that is often associated with such crime."

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