British man gets only 3.5 years in jail for killing gay teenager by setting him on fire.
A young British man has been convicted of manslaughter after killing a gay teen by setting him on fire.
The BBC reports that 20-year-old Jordan Sheard has been sentenced to three and a half years in jail for the death of Steven Simpson after pleading guilty to manslaughter charges. Simpson, 18, died one day after sustaining "significant burns" in June 2012, according to the report.
Simpson had Asperger's syndrome, a speech impairment and epilepsy, the Yorkshire Post noted. The teen had reportedly been dared to strip down to his underpants before being doused in tanning oil, after which Sheard set him aflame at the party. Other reports said that anti-gay messages, including "gay boy" and "I love d*ck," had been found scrawled across Simpson's body.
Detective Sean Middleton described Simpson to the BBC as "a very caring and likeable young man" and a "generous spirit was taken advantage of and a single thoughtless act resulted in his death."
A number of local lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights advocates said they believed Sheard's prison term to be too lenient, but prosecuting attorney Tim Warburton nonetheless told The Star that the sentence was "within the range of what would be expected had it been considered a hate crime," and that it would not be appealed.
"This was a cruel case of bullying based on Steven’s sexuality and disability," Warburton is quoted as saying. "While we accept Jordan did not intend to kill Steven, his actions did lead to his death."
Meanwhile, Sheard's attorney said his client had been "deeply and significantly affected by what he has done and the tragic consequences that ensued," which describing Simpson's death as a "stupid prank that went wrong in a bad way," the Daily Mail noted.
Yeah.. it's rich to judge another country when your own country supports the barbaric act of a state killing its own. But sure.. go ahead and judge others. So typical American it makes me sick.
R2 who is judging?
No one has commented yet.
Wow. That would never happen here. He'd get st least 10 years. Brittan is the worst.
Oh, Smitty! You always make me laugh!
This is a clear failure of the British justice system. It's a sham and they should be mortified and embarrassed at the audacity.
Sad, sounds like GB is like the USA, gays are second class citizens and even killing them is a lesser penalty.
Setting someone on fire is not a "prank" what the hell kind of world are we living in where someone can say they set someone on fire as a prank and everyone just nods in agreement? No, that is murder and the only intent of setting someone on fire is to cause them great harm or death.
This is just as bad as the stupid football culture in America that's been sitting around weeping for the lost career potential of those rapists in Ohio.
[quote]Brittan is the worst.
Amerikka has its faults too.
[quote] Simpson had Asperger's syndrome, a speech impairment and epilepsy
And he was gay on top of all that.
[quote]Yeah.. it's rich to judge another country when your own country supports the barbaric act of a state killing its own. But sure.. go ahead and judge others. So typical American it makes me sick.
There is nothing barbaric about the death penalty for especially heinous crimes if it is consistently and reliably applied. The problem is that it is neither.
The UK would give a man a much longer sentence if an armed intruder broke into the man's house and the man defended his life by killing the armed intruder.
r2, are you equating our use of the death penalty for diabolical killers to this situation? You dumb brit!!!
It's well known that Britain is much lighter on criminal punishment compared to the US. The crime rate in England is also much lower than in the US.
3.5 years is quite long enough for the karma coming Jordan's way. Prison guards will be so busy looking the other way they'll have neck damage. Either that or they'll join in.
DL hates that phoney baloney Austism nonsense, so they'll be happy one of these sociopaths are no longer walking amongst us.
It's even worse than that r8, the cop in the article and the nerve to characterize it as a mere "thoughtless act." So now setting someone on fire is on the same level as forgetting to send someone a birthday card, just a bit of thoughtlessness.
The modern British justice system is known to be one of the most pitiful and pathetic in the world. That's why people do whatever the hell they want there - because they know the consequences will be minimal.
[quote]There is nothing barbaric about the death penalty
Yes, there is, you freak! It's murder. That's stuff they do in the Middle East, and sadly still in America. Sick.
We demand a public hanging for Jordan Sheard.
[quote]The crime rate in England is also much lower than in the US.
No shit, considering the US has 260 million more people than England.
r19, we execute evil killers not women and gays like the middle east!! false equivalency
[quote]The modern British justice system is known to be one of the most pitiful and pathetic in the world. That's why people do whatever the hell they want there - because they know the consequences will be minimal.
The Muslims are wrecking havoc in the UK
Very true, R24.
Awful. I really hope this man has a child, and then sees that child hurt in a similar way.
No r26, kids don't choose their parents, the killer is the one who should be roasted on a spigot.
I watched some documentary about Boy George on YouTube where he was talking about being arrested in NYC, and he was saying how brutal the U.S. penal system is. I'd never really thought about it from any other perspective before, having been born and raised in the U.S.
Britain is a fuckin shithole! Murdering a person out of hate , sadism and psychopathy only gets one a few years in jail?
WTF is wrong with them?
I don't think you roast things on a spigot. Maybe a spit.
Three years for burning someone to death in a hate crime? Dear god.
I keep reading about the most incredibly lenient sentences for murder in the UK. An armed robbery here in the U.S. gets people more time that this subhuman got. WTF is wrong with the sentencing system?
It was meant as a Joke. He was the 20th candle on his birthday. It's done all the time here in the US, we just don't report much on the killing of us mo-sexuals.
I'd love to catch the perp in a cross walk just when he finishes his 3.5 years. He would have a closed casket funeral due to the tire tracks across his face.
Fascinating how this thread, which should have been about this particular case, immediately became a test case for the US vs. the UK.
Isn't anyone just the tiniest bit concerned that tanning oil is flammable?
They should've sentenced him like they did this monster on a Seattle murder--a murder of a great gay man who was my bf's best friend and college roommate. He was a funny, good looking, nature/animal lover and decent human being.
The monster broke his back, put an ice pick in his temple and set him on fire.
That's a terrible story, R36. It's heartbreaking. The brutality of the attack and its likely unprovoked nature says much about the perpetrator and future likelihood of violence. The judge got it right and understood her function in society:
[quote]A King County judge said that while Michael Maiava endured a childhood of pain, her main concern was public safety. She gave the 24-year-old man the longest possible sentence for killing Kevin Shaw in October 2004. "It's my job to make sure this doesn't happen to somebody else," Superior Court Judge Theresa Doyle said.
It's a sad thing, but some people can't be rehabilitated and protecting society is the most reasonable thing that our legal system can do.
This makes me physically sick. Unfuckingbelievable.
Thank you for your response R37, and I agree with what you have said.
I want to include a picture of Kevin.
"British justice"... what a laugh! Brit jurists are a mob of sick fucks.
I don't understand why he couldn't have been charged separately-one count of manslaughter and and extra charge for the hate crime. (Or two charges, since it's apparently amusing to immolate someone who's gay and disabled.)
Any Brits know?
[quote] and extra charge for the hate crime.
Because the judge deemed it NOT a hate crime.
Just a tragic accident (the judge, not me)
R42 here, not accident
The judge and prosecutor felt it was a horrible prank gone wrong. Not a hate crime.
Could the judge and prosecutor explain why an obviously "different" person was selected to suffer the prank other than being disabled and gay?
It just fucking amazes me that a society that has such stringent hate speech laws that can land a person in jail has such awful sentencing guidelines and, apparently, officers of the court.
r44, that was what I was getting at, but I don't know UK law.
Over here, the intent alone would be enough for a separate hate crime charge (Canada).
I find it astonishing that the Crown's remarks, if accurate, admit the nature of the crime.
It just seems like either a lack of political will or outright homophobia.
A reveller killed a vulnerable teenager when he doused him in tanning oil and set him alight at his own 18th birthday party.
Jordan Sheard, 20, flicked a lighter at Steven Simpson’s groin as part of a 2am prank, then ran from the flat, a court heard today.
Steven, who lived alone and had Asperger syndrome, epilepsy and a speech impairment, died the next day in hospital from 60% burns.
He was bullied at the party over his disability and the fact he was gay, before being dared to strip to his boxers.
Judge Roger Keen told him: “Egged on by others you sought to put a flame to Steven.
“What it did was engulf him in a fire. You tried to briefly assist and then you ran away. That in my judgment is serious aggravation.”
Sarah Wright, prosecuting, told Sheffield crown court: “Steven seemed to be enjoying the situation.
"Then Jordan Sheard took out a lighter and Steven... went up in flames.”
At the hospital before he died Steven told his father Kevin that: “A lad took a bottle out of a drawer and chucked it over him.
"The next thing he remembered was going up in flames."
At first nobody turned up for Steven’s party on Friday, June 22 last year where a neighbour had made a buffet and provided beer.
Steven then went to collect partygoers and a number of young people arrived.
He seemed to be enjoying himself and there was horseplay and Steven was encouraged to strip to his boxer shorts.
Some time after 2am partygoer Reece Thompson poured Calypso tanning oil from a bottle over Steven in his bedroom and said Ms Wright: “Steven did not object, he seemed to be enjoying the situation.
"Then Jordan Sheard took out a cigarette lighter struck it and held it to Steven and he went up in flames.”
Andrew Smith, defending, said: “It was the result of a criminally stupid prank that went wrong in a bad way.”
He said: “He is a pleasant young man with no edge to his character, hard-working and has a degree of intelligence.
"He has been deeply and significantly affected by what he has done and the tragic consequences that ensued from it.”
A pal described Steven as “a very nice lad who wouldn’t hurt a fly.”
Sheard, of Cudworth, near Barnsley, initially tried to blame Steven for setting himself on fire.
He was jailed for three-and-a-half years after he admitted manslaughter.
[quote]Sarah Wright, prosecuting, told Sheffield crown court: “Steven seemed to be enjoying the situation.
What the fucking hell kind of a prosecutor is this? Is she somehow related or connected to the defendant's family? First, he didn't attempt to put out the fire and ran away and then he blamed the victim.
They seem to be saying "Well at least he had fun before he died."
This should be appealed
R3, I was commenting on the article.. not on comments being made here. I just don't think Americans should judge other countries as long as their country performs the barbaric act of killing its own people.
R13, I'm not British, but I am European. Nice try though.
Britain should have the death penalty!!!!
I'm a grown man I cried reading this story. The terror and pain this kid went through for what? Bullied all his life for it to end like this? One more reason I know there is no God.
[quote]There is nothing barbaric about the death penalty for especially heinous crimes if it is consistently and reliably applied. The problem is that it is neither.
I'm from Norway. I've seen a guy slaughter kids. I'm still against the death penalty, as is most of the Norwegian population. I still think it's wrong of a state to kill its own people. I do not support an eye for an eye penalty, and I don't think revenge is the best way to base your criminal system on. There's a reason USA is the only western country in the world with the death penalty. There's a reason Amnesty is against the death penalty. Do you need me to go on?
To the Americans here who support the death penalty: do you support a state killing its own people? do you support innocent people getting killed? do you think revenge is the best punishment? is an eye for an eye really the best way to go? let me also ask you this: why is USA the only western country in the world left with a death penalty? why does USA still have so many more murders a year (population wise) than other countries without the death penalty? Think about that for a while, then come back to me. It's obvious that the death penalty isn't working, all it does is make people believe in this novice idea that everything will be ok when the killer is dead, but it won't. It won't change the outcome of anything. If anything it will make you as bad as the killer. You support killing people too.
r53, enjoy your Muslims LOL
[quote]To the Americans here who support the death penalty: do you support a state killing its own people?
Yes, Norwegian guy they do, overwhelmingly. I'm American and anti-death penalty myself but any murder over here which is in any way sensational gets the torture-porn masses salivating. The online comments of news stories are usually 90% people fantasizing the best way to kill the killer, in gruesome detail. Americans are a blood-thirsty violent lot, maybe because of all the religion over here.
[quote]To the Americans here who support the death penalty: do you support a state killing its own people?
American against the death penalty here, but don't get me wrong - it's not about the humanity of the murdering scumbags that makes me against the death penalty. It's about the humanity of the rest of us.
Real civilization will remove murderers from society so decent people can live in peace. A barbaric society seeks to perpetuate killing.
So it's legal to kill people in the UK?
If I ever find out I'm in the will of some mean, crazy, rich relative, I'm taking them on vacation there.
r55, then get the fuck out if you hate it so much!!!
I feel like r52. I haven't cried about this but I have, I guess, been in a state of shock. I've seen and heard about a lot of horrible things people do to other people in my life and, yet, each time I read about something like this, it affects me deeply. This one -- a young boy, gay, autistic, dying in such a horrific manner. My brain doesn't want to go there.
Gays don't matter- hARVEY Feinstein
Their entire justice system is a joke.
There was recently a case were a bf beat the hell out of his gf and the judge thought justice was best served by community service.
R55 is right.
For the nation that enforced homophobia throughout its empire around the globe, this sentence seems about right. The empire may be history, but its homophobia is not.
r63 is right!!!
This kind of reminds me of another example of "British Justice." Back in the 1990s, there was a case where a man strangled his wife to death. His defense was that he simply couldn't help himself because his wife was so annoying. The judge agreed with the defense and gave the defendant a suspended 18-month sentence. "Being annoying" was actually considered a legitimate defense for killing someone.
I just finished reading the thread about the woman who was raped at a party because she broke up with her boyfriend the month before.
What a difference in responses. No one is blaming the victim on this thread.
How drunk was the flamer?
[quote]let me also ask you this: why is USA the only western country in the world left with a death penalty?
Only about half the nation believe in the Death Penalty in the US. They are called Right To Lifers.
In Europe five years is a long sentence for premeditated murder. This wasn't premeditated, so by European standards it is long.
The guy in Norway only got 20 years and he killed like 70 people.
[quote][R19], we execute evil killers not women and gays like the middle east!! false equivalency
No, it's not. Death as a punishment by the state is how it works in the Middle East. You are the biggest troll here.