Two men jailed for manslaughter at Poplar Kitten

TWO men from Harlow have been sentenced today, Friday, March 15, after being found guilty of a manslaughter.

Andrew Watt, 48, died in hospital on August 19, 2017, after being assaulted outside the Poplar Kitten pub in Harlow two days before.

Anton Collins, 27, of Hookfield and 24-year-old Jack Jordan, of Davenport, were both found guilty by jury at Chelmsford Crown Court on February 13.

The jury heard how Mr Watt had been drinking in the Poplar Kitten, his local, at the same time as Collins and Jordan on August 17 2017.

At around 10pm, an argument had broken out about a debt allegedly owed to Collins’ father by one of Mr Watt’s friends.

Mr Watt continued to try and diffuse the arguments but, throughout the night, Collins and Jordan continued to target the group of men.

Both Collins and Jordan left the pub after Mr Watt was knocked unconscious and fell to the floor, where he suffered severe head injuries. Mr Watt was airlifted to Addenbrooke’s Hospital but, sadly, died several days later.

Today, Collins was sentenced to six years and Jordan received two years for their roles in the assault.

Before the sentencing, Mr Watt’s wife, Sarah, paid tribute to him, saying he was the “cheekiest, funniest and most loving person” she’d ever met.

In a statement read to the court, she recalled their wedding day, just eight weeks prior to her husband’s death: “when I saw him standing there, I couldn’t get down the aisle fast enough. I can remember my dad telling me to slow down!”

In remembering her husband and his “Watty tricks” she noted how “bittersweet” it was to know that he had saved four lives through donating his organs. She stated there was some comfort in knowing that “his heart is still beating and a part of him still lives on.”

Mrs Watt criticised the “arrogance” of Jack Jordan and Anton Collins and expressed her frustration at the lack of remorse shown for their involvements in her husband’s death.

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Chief Inspector Martin Pasmore of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “Today has been a very sad day for Mr Watt’s family, and I would like to praise them for their dignity throughout this extraordinarily difficult time.

“Collins and Jordan took away someone irreplaceable to them, fuelled by alcohol and over an irrelevant £20 debt, and they still have not shown remorse.

“I hope that these sentences, and seeing both of these men behind bars, will be of some small comfort to them, and will allow them to start healing from this terrible tragedy.”

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