Tyne & Wear

David Wilson Sunderland murder: Daniel Johnson guilty

Daniel Johnson Image copyright Northumbria Police
Image caption Footage shown in court showed Johnson at a house party pouring alcohol into his eyes and dancing before the murder

A drunk man who knifed a grandfather to death and then later used the victim's phone to call police asking for a lift has been convicted of murder.

Daniel Johnson will serve a minimum of 23 years behind bars for killing David Wilson, 49, as he lay in bed in his Sunderland flat.

Johnson, of Morris Street, Gateshead, who had earlier been drinking at a nearby house party, had denied murder.

But he was found guilty of the "brutal" killing at Newcastle Crown Court.

The hearing was told how Johnson was at a party on 14 December 2014 and footage was shown in court of him pouring alcohol into his eyes and dancing.

Image copyright Northumbria Police
Image caption David Wilson was found dead in December 2014

When he left the party he came across Mr Wilson's partner, who had left their Southwick Road flat to get a takeaway.

CCTV footage showed Johnson lead the man to a cash machine to try and force him to get money out but this failed.

Johnson then took the man's house keys before running off and letting himself into the flat where his victim - who had also spent the night drinking - was asleep.

Image copyright Northumbria Police
Image caption Police focussed on CCTV images taken near the cash machine at the Post Office in Southwick Green

He then straddled his victim and repeatedly stabbed him through his duvet as he slept.

Det Chf Insp Mark Ord, of Northumbria Police, said it was a "stranger" murder and Johnson did not know his victim.

"David was brutally murdered when he was most likely asleep. We focused on CCTV footage showing the attempted robbery of David's partner at a cash point", he said.

"The second key piece of evidence was a call being made to the police that morning from David's phone at 04:41 asking for a lift - these were the two pieces of a complex jigsaw that we needed to fill in."

Image caption Det Chf Insp Mark Ord said Johnson had stabbed his victim through his duvet while he was asleep
Image caption Johnson was given a life sentence with a minimum of 23 years in prison

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