The killer of a harmless and vulnerable father-of-four twice his age has been jailed for five years.
At Luton Crown Court yesterday Ravi Sandhu, 24, of Kathie Road, Bedford, was found guilty of the manslaughter of 48-year-old Kevin Harrison, of Raunds, with a single punch because he “breached Sandhu’s honour”.
Judge Richard Foster, sentencing Sandhu, said: “What is clear to me is that Kevin Harrison was a 48-year-old harmless man, who was very drunk.
“He was no threat to anyone apart from perhaps himself.”
Panel beater Mr Harrison, who was celebrating a birthday in Bedford with his 18-year-old son, suffered head and brain injuries from which he died a week later after Sandhu punched him to the ground in the early hours of September 11 last year while on the phone to his distraught wife Trish.
CCTV footage shown to the court showed Mr Harrison accidentally knock into one of Sandhu’s family outside Hi Fi nightclub in High Street, Bedford, moments earlier as he looked for his son after they became separated.
A police officer stepped in and ushered Sandhu and his group away after they surrounded Mr Harrison, who was waving his arms.
Sandhu and his party walked around the corner to a bus stop in St Paul’s Square but there was a second confrontation when Mr Harrison, still talking to his wife, walked into the square.
Without warning Sandhu lashed out, throwing a single punch at Mr Harrison, who was standing on the kerb.
It hit him in the mouth, but he fell heavily into the road and suffered an appalling head injury from which he never recovered.
Mr Foster said there had been no aggressiveness or maliciousness when Mr Harrison bumped into one of Sandhu’s group.
But he told Sandhu his reaction to it had been to see it as some sort of “breach of honour”.
Medical teams at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge fought around the clock to relieve the pressure around Mr Harrison’s brain, but complications set in and he died on September 18, having never regained consciousness.
Mrs Harrison, 45, who had celebrated their eighth wedding anniversary just one month earlier, said: “They were so amazing and never gave up on him.
“They are such dedicated people. They made a totally unbearable time just a little bit more bearable.
“Too much of this one-punch crime is happening and needs to stop. People need to be made aware that a fist can be just as dangerous to a person as a gun or knife.
“If a person is shot dead or knifed that is murder. Just remember a fist can be just as deadly and should be treated in the same way.
“One totally mindless action has totally destroyed our lives and taken an absolutely remarkable person from us. Our lives will never be the same.”