Manslaughter Conviction For Man Who Stabbed Flatmate To Death

"This was a frenzied attack on a young man with his whole life ahead of him"

Manslaughter For Wandsworth Man Who Stabbed Flatmate To Death
The victim: Kyle Maher

A man who repeatedly stabbed a fellow housemate after a dispute over loud music escalated, has been convicted of manslaughter.

Richard Wilson-Michael, 29, of Drakefield Road, SW17, was found guilty of the manslaughter of Kyle Maher, 21, of the same address, and causing grievous bodily harm on a second victim.

Wilson-Michael was convicted of manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility as he was suffering from "an abnormality of the mind" at the time of the offence.

Kingston Crown Court this week heard how police were called shortly after 3am on Saturday 21 January, to reports of a disturbance at a house in Drakefield Road. Officers attended and found Kyle inside the property suffering from stab injuries. Police officers administered first aid prior to the arrival of the London Ambulance Service.

Kyle was taken to hospital by paramedics but was pronounced dead shortly after arrival.A post-mortem examination held on Sunday 22 January at St George's Mortuary gave his cause of death as stab wounds to the heart and neck

Wilson-Michael was arrested at the scene on suspicion of murder and admitted fatally wounding Kyle but claimed that he acted in self-defence.

The court heard how the pair had an angry row five days before the fatal attack. On that occasion, Wilson-Michael confronted Kyle and asked him to turn the music in his room down. The discussion became heated and Wilson- Michael went to his room before returning with a knife and repeatedly saying to Kyle, "Do you know who I am."

This dispute did not go beyond words and gestures but both Wilson-Michael and Kyle were reported to have felt aggrieved and tensions were running high. In the early hours of Saturday morning, Kyle went downstairs and became involved in a heated argument with Wilson-Michael. Other residents heard the dispute as it escalated. A 17-year-old girl who had been visiting ran downstairs and witnessed Wilson-Michael repeatedly stabbing Kyle.

As she tried to fend him off she suffered several knife wounds to her wrists and arm that required hospital treatment. The injuries have resulted in restricted movement in her hand.

Detective Chief Inspector Tony Lynes, from the Homicide and Major Crime Command led the investigation. He says, "This was a frenzied attack on a young man with his whole life ahead of him. He had a 14-month-old child and had recently got engaged to his girlfriend and for such a petty dispute to escalate into a fatal attack is tragic.

"I would like to pay tribute to the officers who attended and did their best to save Kyle, and to the second victim who tried desperately to prevent the attack on Kyle. Finally I would like to pay my respects to Kyle's family whose loss has been painful and beyond belief.

"I hope today's verdict will go some small way to helping them to moving on."

August 3, 2017