Rushden man who murdered his friend jailed for 17 years

Danney Beaumont
Danney Beaumont

A 27-year-old Northamptonshire man has been jailed for a minimum of 17 years after he was found guilty of murdering his friend by stabbing him in the chest and back.

Danney Beaumont, of Maple Road, Rushden, was convicted of murder after a 10-day trial at Northampton Crown Court earlier this month.

Murder victim Steven Smith, 23, of Trafford Road, Rushden NNL-141029-101241001

Murder victim Steven Smith, 23, of Trafford Road, Rushden NNL-141029-101241001

The jury heard that Beaumont stabbed Steven Smith, aged 23, a father-of-three, after the pair became involved in an argument at Mr Smith’s home in Trafford Road, Rushden, in the early hours of Saturday, October 25 last year.

Beaumont, who had only been released from prison a few days before the fatal attack, used a large kitchen knife to stab Mr Smith. He then took the knife out of the property and told police he dumped it in a hedge. However, it has never been recovered.

At a sentencing hearing today (Monday), the court heard Beaumont was jailed for 15 months in February 2014 for charges of dangerous driving and assaulting a police officer.

Amjad Malik, prosecuting, said Beaumont admitted biting an off-duty police officer’s leg after he tried to arrest him when he saw a car had crashed into a wall.

After searching the car and Beaumont’s home, officers also uncovered a quantity of drugs including cocaine, MDMA, methodrome and cannabis.

However, Mr Malik said “for an unknown reason” the charges relating to possession of drugs were drafted on a separate indictment to the dangerous driving and assault of a police officer.

Today Judge Rupert Mayo sentenced Beaumont to nine month in prison for possession of cocaine, 20 months for possession of cannabis with intent to supply and two months for possession of the other class A drugs, with all sentences to be served concurrently.

Mr Malik said Beaumont was a “street dealer” and had previously served four prison sentences for possession of cannabis with intent to supply. His most recent sentence for the offence was in April 2013 when he was sentenced to 18 months in prison.

Judge Mayo said he did not believe the murder was premeditated but said Beaumont had intended to cause serious harm with the first blow then intended to kill with the second.

He said Mr Smith’s widow Ainsley Douglas had been left to deal with the daily aftermath of her partner’s murder and she had been put through the ordeal of giving evidence at the trial.

Judge Mayo said Beaumont would serve a minimum of 17 years in jail and would remain on licence for the rest of his life.