Life in jail for dealer af­ter fa­tal stab­bing

Herald Express - - News - BY GUY HEN­DER­SON

A52-YEAR-OLD drug dealer is be­gin­ning a life sen­tence af­ter be­ing found guilty of mur­der­ing a man in a “squalid” flat in Teign­mouth.

David Ablett, of Barn­park Ter­race de­nied stab­bing to death 38-year-old Matthew Jack­son on June 3, but was con­victed at Ex­eter Crown Court.

Ablett has been sen­tenced to life in prison for the mur­der, which he car­ried out with an or­na­men­tal fork. He will serve a min­i­mum of 16 years. He was also found guilty on the charge of sup­ply of a class-A drug and sen­tenced to three years in jail to be served con­cur­rently.

The court was told Ablett stabbed Mr Jack­son six times fol­low­ing an al­ter­ca­tion at Ablett’s home ad­dress in Teign­mouth.

Fol­low­ing the fa­tal stab­bing, Ablett made at­tempts to cover up his ac­tions by wash­ing the mur­der weapon and hid­ing it in nearby un­der­growth.

Ablett was then aided by Neal Hin­ton, 39, and also from Teign­mouth, who helped move the body from the scene and dis­pos­ing of it by nearby bins.

Prop­erty be­long­ing to Mr Jack­son was also placed in un­der­growth away from the scene.

The body was found by a mem­ber of the pub­lic early in the morn­ing on June 3, spark­ing the po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

De­tec­tives soon lo­cated Ablett in his flat where in­juries he had sus­tained in the fight were cov­ered up.

Po­lice say Ablett gave in­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cers false in­for­ma­tion about how he came by his in­juries in an at­tempt to dis­tance him­self from the mur­der.

Ablett was ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of mur­der and through­out the in­ves­ti­ga­tion re­fused to speak to po­lice.

Dur­ing his trial, Ex­eter Crown Court heard from Ablett that he was de­fend­ing him­self from Mr Jack­son who, he said, was at­tack­ing him for drugs.

How­ever, the pros­e­cu­tion ar­gued this was a case of Ablett’s word only, that he was not de­fend­ing him­self but his drugs, and that the force used was not rea­son­able.

Hin­ton pleaded guilty at a pre­vi­ous and sep­a­rate hear­ing to per­vert­ing the course of jus­tice. He is due to be sen­tenced on Mon­day.

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