Man jailed after causing father-figure’s death

William Lynch
William Lynch

A MAN has been jailed after pushing another man over, resulting in his death.

William Lynch (41) of Moresby Close, Leigh, was convicted of manslaughter following a trial at Liverpool Crown Court.

Today (Monday) he was sentenced to four years and three months in prison.

Derek Alexander Szostok, 62, died after he tried to intervene during a drunken row between Lynch and his brother at a flat on Moresby Close in Leigh in the early hours of August 26, 2014.

Lynch, locally known as Billy, lived in a flat above Derek and the two were close. Lynch admitted later he looked at Derek as a father-type figure. They also regularly socialised in their respective flats with friends.

On Monday, August 25, 2014, Derek, Lynch, Lynch’s brother and two other friends were at Lynch’s flat enjoying a few drinks and chatting.

Lynch and his brother got into a drunken argument, which the two often did, and it initially started as reasonably childish. However, it descended into a more violent confrontation resulting in Lynch throwing a coffee table and putting his foot through a TV screen.

Derek got up to separate the two brothers, but during the scuffle was pushed to the ground by Lynch, knocking the back of his head against the top of the stairs.

The police were called and Derek was taken to hospital, where he initially responded to treatment. However, he later had to endure a 10-hour operation due to the injuries he had sustained and sadly suffered a stroke. He died on 30 August, 2014.

A Home Office post-mortem examination later established Derek died as a result of flexation of the neck.

Detective Chief Inspector Howard Millington said: “This is an extremely sad case, the facts of which paint a tragic picture of excessive alcohol consumption.

“Lynch looked up to Derek as a sort of father-figure, and the two were close, which make’s Derek death even more tragic.

“It is clear that Derek was trying to play peacemaker between two brothers whose argument had turned violent. He was therefore an innocent victim caught up in a row not of his own making, and sadly in trying to diffuse the row he has been pushed to the ground and suffered a fatal injury.

“It is a very sad case and I would like to extend my condolences to all of Derek’s family for the loss they have suffered. I can only hope today gives them some sense of closure following his death.

“What this case does show is that a combination of alcohol and violence can be a lethal mix. I would urge people to look at this case and think twice before consuming excess alcohol and losing self-control, resulting in people like Derek becoming unwitting and innocent victims.”