Protest over murder verdict

FAMILY and friends of an amateur boxer facing life in jail for murdering a Sheffield father with a single punch gathered in the city to protest against his conviction.

About 100 protesters waved banners and chanted outside Sheffield Crown Court, where 20-year-old Bradley Hinkler was last week convicted of murdering Thomas Gower, 26, from Gleadless.

The supporters protested for more than an hour outside the court building before walking through the city.

Hinkler admitted landing a fatal punch on Thomas outside the Alibi bar, at the junction of Trippet Lane and Holly Street, last December, but denied murder, claiming self-defence.

Jurors took four-and-a-half hours to reach a unanimous verdict of murder, as well as grievous bodily harm on Thomas’ friend Richard Howard.

Bradley’s aunt Michelle Pask, 34, from Norfolk Park, said she believed the verdict was ‘appalling’ and her nephew should have been convicted of manslaughter.

“Bradley and all his family and friends are deeply sorry that Thomas Gower lost his life in this way, but we need to show the public that Bradley is not the person tarnished by the prosecution and that this is such an unjustified verdict,” she said.

Hinkler, of Kilvington Road, Woodthorpe, will be sentenced next week.