Kent

Carl Gregory death: Man guilty of social media row murder

John Dickson Image copyright Kent Police
Image caption Dickson denied the charge but was convicted of murder

A man who choked a video game fan to death during a fight over a social media post has been found guilty of murder.

John Dickson, 27, confronted 20-year-old Carl Gregory in a shopping centre car park in Broadstairs, Kent.

During the scuffle, Dickson, who had denied murder, placed Mr Gregory in a choke hold which ultimately caused his death.

Dickson was convicted after a trial at Maidstone Crown Court.

After the hearing, police said a friend of Mr Gregory's had fallen out with him over a social media post and she asked another man to speak to him about it.

He arranged to meet Mr Gregory at the shopping centre and took Dickson with him, and a fight led to Dickson becoming involved and placing Mr Gregory in a choke hold, officers said.

Police said Mr Gregory was also kicked while he was on the ground on 4 October last year.

Image copyright Family handout
Image caption Carl Gregory died in the car park in Broadstairs

Workers leaving nearby shops found his body, but he was declared dead at the scene.

The cause of death was later recorded as compression of the neck.

Det Sgt Ross Gurden said Dickson, of Northdown Road, Cliftonville, had gone out of his way to confront Mr Gregory.

He said: "I hope this case reinforces the message that the use of violence to resolve issues can result in life-changing consequences. Dickson is a young man who will now serve a considerable length of time behind bars."

Another defendant, Christopher Pollard, 20, of Brimstone Hill, Meopham, had faced the same charge and was found not guilty.

Sentencing was adjourned to Thursday.

At the time of his death, relatives described Mr Gregory as a typical 20 year old who enjoyed gaming, modern technology and Pokemon Go.

Early reports incorrectly linked his death to the mobile game.

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