Teenagers beat Peterborough man to death before going to party - court

Bretton underpass where Michael Green was found dead. Photo: David Lowndes
Bretton underpass where Michael Green was found dead. Photo: David Lowndes
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Four drunken teenagers beat Peterborough man Michael Green to death in a savage attack in a Bretton underpass before going on to a party, a court heard today (26 November).

The group - three boys aged 15, 16 and 17 at the time and a girl who was 16 - launched a vicious group assault on Mr Green (23) which left him with fatal head injuries, Cambridge Crown Court heard.

Michael Green. Photo supplied

Michael Green. Photo supplied

The heavily drunk Green, who was affected by medication he was also taking, was hit twice and knocked down in the underpass with a vodka bottle by the 16-year-old boy, before the other boys kicked and stamped on him repeatedly as he lay dead or dying in the early hours of Tuesday, 28 May, the jury was told.

The girl then walked over to his prostrate body and stamped on his face in apparent revenge for him accidentally striking her earlier that evening, the court heard.

Jane Bickerstaff QC told the court: “It began with a vicious assault by the 16-year-old using a weapon inflicting brute force to Michael Green’s head and causing him to fall to the floor. He never got up from that blow.

“The other three defendants saw that blow and saw its effects clearly. They saw Michael Green fall to the floor. They then got in on the act using... either their fists or their feet while Michael Green remained on the floor defenceless.”

All four defendants had been drinking heavily before the attack, the court heard, including two who had been bought vodka by Green and spent the afternoon and early evening drinking with him at his home in the Bretton area of the city.

The defendants, all but the youngest of whom are now 17, all deny murder and grievous bodily harm.

The girl also denies a charge of attempting to pervert the court of justice relating to claims she tried to make a witness change her evidence before the trial.

Green ‘offered to fight’ teenagers

The jury heard Mr Green offered to fight all the boys when confronted by them in the underpass before shoving

the 15-year-old girl out the way.

This prompted her boyfriend to “whack him” with the bottle, the prosecution claims, starting the attack.

Miss Bickerstaff said after the initial assault the group walked a few metres away but could still see the victim laying in the same position.

She added: “The girl then said something and then ran over and turned Michael Green over and stamped

on him hard on the head, saying ‘that is for hitting me earlier.’

“The girl had clearly seen what they had done and she joined herself to the enterprise by using the same type of force they had used and then she left with the others.”

The group robbed Mr Green of his wallet, mobile phone and a neck chain and bracelet, the court heard, before going on to the nearby party.

Other partygoers claim they were boasting at the party of having beaten up Mr Green, the court heard, with the 16-year-old boy telling a friend he had “bottled someone” and the 17-year-old saying “yeah, I hit him really hard”.

The four defendants voluntarily went to police the next day, May 28, after news broke of Mr Green being found dead, and were later charged.

Victim ‘seemed drunk’

Mr Green’s mother, Barbara, told the jury that, despite not wearing a sling, her son had been in pain from his collarbone injury caused by falling from a tree and still could not lift his arm up to his head.

She said he had appeared drunk on the night of his death but when she told him not to go out he swore at her.

She thought the two girls at the house looked under-age but said her son told her they were 18, adding that he said knew them through Facebook.

She described his hitting of the female defendant as an accidental “flamboyant” wave of the arm for which he immediately apologised, which the girl seemed to accept.