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Court Of Appeal To Review Cudworth Case

Tuesday April 30 2013

Steven Simpson Steven Simpson

THE Court of Appeal is to review the case of a Cudworth teenager who died of burns after being set on fire at his 18th birthday party.

Campaign group Stop Hate UK has asked the Attorney General to examine whether the three-year jail sentence given to Jordan Sheard for manslaughter following Steven Simpson's death was too lenient.

Steven, who suffered from Asperger's syndrome, had thrown a party at his home on Pleasant View, Cudworth, to celebrate his birthday.

A neighbour said they appeared to be having fun, but later on there was some 'good-natured' horseplay and Steven was asked by friends to strip to his boxer shorts.

The group later moved into Steven's bedroom where one of them covered him in tanning oil.

Sheard, egged on by the others, took out a lighter, and set light to Steven who 'went up in flames'.

He died the following day - having suffered 60 per cent burns to his body.

Una Morris, of Stop Hate UK, said having examined the evidence presented in court, the group felt Sheard's sentence, which followed a guilty plea, was unduly lenient.

She said: "When something appears to be motivated by a disability or sexual orientation, the judge should say it was motivated by these factors and should increase the sentence or aggravate the sentence to show these things are a factor. That didn't happen.

"We are pleased it has been referred to the Court of Appeal.

"The fact that has been referred means it is possibly unduly lenient."

A spokesman for the Attorney General's office, said: "The case will in due course be heard by three Court of Appeal judges who will decide whether or not to increase the sentence.”

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Reply Posted by jo on Tuesday April 30 2013 at 10:33
it needs increasing its rediculous that .

Reply Posted by mathew on Tuesday April 30 2013 at 10:41
3 years for taking someones life!! rediculous!!! he clearly knew what he was doing and the courts should increase his time by a lot!!! no justice in britain its gone to the dogs!!!!! bring back hanging crimes wouldnt happen beleive me!!

Reply Posted by Jo on Tuesday April 30 2013 at 11:02
This wasn't just manslaughter - it was systematic bullying and torturing of a vulnerable young adult and additional charges should have been brought. That poor young man would have been terrified and in agony. I would also like to see the rest of the people who were at that party, taking advantage of this lad's hospitality and good nature charged for their part in this. To stand by and fail to assist someone who is on fire, to do so when you know the lad has been tormented and stood and no doubt laughed and egged the others on, to do so knowing he was so vulnerable - well you deserve locking up too because you are not fit to be amongst decent people.

My heart absolutely breaks for Steven and his family and I hope justice is done.

Reply Posted by anon on Thursday May 2 2013 at 09:30
the sentence given for this crime was a joke this poor boys life was cruelly taken and his killer was given just 3 years so will hardly serve anytime at all yet break into someones home and you recieve more jail time i know which id class as the worst crime murder/manslaughter should carry a minimum term of 10 years at least :( british justice --- a total joke

Reply Posted by Noname on Thursday May 2 2013 at 09:37
Three years is an injustice together with the fact that no one else was charged either! We need to start a zero tolerance within some parts of Barnsley before they become lawless neighbourhoods with tragic consequences such as this. We need to start questioning why so many people from one area participated in this and did nothing to stop the incident occurring?? RIP Steven

Reply Posted by kaz on Thursday May 2 2013 at 09:49
Well said jo the sentence was disgusting and i too think everybody involved should be severely punished rip steven

Reply Posted by Believer of Bob on Thursday May 2 2013 at 10:01
really really sad,
dont know whats worse
the justice system or the fact 20 + ppl attended the party and did nothing
all cept that one bloke

Reply Posted by Miss.N on Monday May 6 2013 at 13:08
Jo, unfortunately their failure to act does not make them guilty as it does not fall under an act by omission so no charges could really be brought. But those directly involved should be severely punished; they took a life via a dangerous act that could be reasonably foreseeable to cause death or serious injury (I studied law if you can tell!).

Reply Posted by clare taylor on Monday May 6 2013 at 16:47
3 years isnt long enough should be longer,what did he think would happen when he got a lighter out and used flamable materials,feel sorry for the man who tried to save steven too while everyone stood back and watched