Son, 21, batters 90-year-old father to death after he 'flipped out' on being asked for $12
21-year-old Michael Burns battered his father William Burns after his mother Diane asked for money to purchase food and cigarettes.
A 90-year-old father was killed by his own son in a row over £10 ($12.28) after the victim had just returned from church. 21-year-old Michael Burns battered his father William Burns after his mother Diane asked for money to purchase food or cigarettes, Mirror reports.
"I'm sick of this," Michael shouted in response. "I'm always giving you money." He then ran towards his father and began punching him repeatedly. In court, Michael was accompanied by a number of tearful family members as he shook in the dock awaiting the verdict. He was sentenced to three years and four months in prison after pleading guilty to manslaughter at a previous hearing.
The assault took place on March 24, according to Anya Horwood, prosecuting, when William and Diane had just returned from church to their family residence in Netherton, Merseyside. Diane had asked her son for just £10 when he attacked his father. During Friday's sentencing hearing at the Liverpool Crown Court, Horwood said Michael began to 'punch his father to the face and side of body' and did not stop until his mother Diane intervened.
The prosecutor also said William's family did not immediately seek medical treatment, but that he was seen by a doctor at home the next day. Dispatch received a call from a neighbor on March 27 raising concerns for the Burns' family, and responding officers found Williams slumped on the floor of the living room. According to Horwood, Michael told officers as he was arrested that he had "just flipped", and also admitted to hitting his father on multiple previous occasions, albeit without serious injury.
That said, William sustained fractures to his jaw, eye socket, cheekbone, and ribs from the attack. He was rushed to the hospital, but died on April 6 after developing pneumonia. Meanwhile, Lloyd Morgan, defending, stressed that Burns suffered from autistic spectrum disorder. "He is a young man wracked with guilt, shame and horror that his actions have killed the father he loved and have caused his mother such pain and despair," he said, adding that "No matter what sentence is passed upon him today, he will be suffering a sentence for the rest of his life - the knowledge he took the life of his father."
Diane wrote a statement to the judge grieving the loss of her husband but said she was also heartbroken at the thought of losing her son. "I recognize that your mother is desperate about the predicament in which you are now placed," Honorary Recorder of Liverpool Judge Andrew Menary QC told Michael. "I'm satisfied that you do not represent a significant risk to others in the future and are not, therefore, to be regarded as dangerous."
However, the judge insisted he couldn't "ignore the level of violence used" against the "particularly frail" father, whom he also described as "small" and "slight of build." Michael is reportedly a father to a two-month-old child. He has the support of his partner and wider family, the court heard.