York & North Yorkshire

York men sentenced over assault and taxi death

Linden Smith, 20, Jack Alexander, 21, and Robbie McHale, 20 Image copyright North yorkshire police
Image caption Linden Smith, 20, Jack Alexander, 21, and Robbie McHale, 20 were all found guilty at Leeds Crown Court

Three men have been sentenced for killing a man who was attacked before being hit by a taxi in York.

Sam Wilson, 21, was walking with a friend to a club when they were attacked on Haxby Road last October.

He was left lying in the road where he was accidentally hit by a taxi.

At Leeds Crown Court, Linden Smith, 20, Jack Alexander, 21, and Robbie McHale, 20, were found guilty of manslaughter and assault causing actual bodily harm. All three denied the charges.

The court heard Mr Wilson and his friend, Henry Smith, 20, were walking to the city centre club in the early hours of 11 October after they had been to a 60th birthday party.

As the pair reached Haxby Road, they encountered Smith, Alexander and McHale, who had been drinking in a pub. The two groups exchanged words before the trio attacked Mr Wilson and Mr Smith.

Image copyright North yorkshire police
Image caption Mr Wilson's family described him as a "loving, gregarious and wonderful" bricklayer and barman

Mr Wilson was left unconscious lying in the middle of the road, where he was hit by a taxi which had no chance of stopping before it reached him, police said.

All three had fled while Mr Wilson was pronounced dead at the scene.

Alexander, of Fox Covert, was jailed for seven years.

McHale, of Fifth Avenue, was sentenced to a young offender's institute for five years and six months, while Smith, of Kirkham Avenue, was detained for five years and four months.

A jury returned a unanimous guilty verdict on Thursday following a trial.

Mr Wilson's family issued a statement in which they said the 21-year-old was "loving, gregarious and a wonderful son, brother, grandson, nephew and friend".

Det Ch Insp Paul Sweeting said: "This was an extremely tragic incident which resulted in the sad and untimely death of a young man who was enjoying a night out with his friends.

"The violent and totally unnecessary actions of Linden Smith, Jack Alexander, and Robbie McHale have left Sam's family and friends understandably devastated."

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