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Prosecuting Homicide

Murder and manslaughter are two of the offences that constitute homicide.

Manslaughter can be committed in one of three ways:

  1. killing with the intent for murder but where there is provocation, diminished responsibility or a suicide pact.
  2. conduct that was grossly negligent given the risk of death, and resulted in death.
  3. conduct, taking the form of an unlawful act involving a danger of some harm, that caused death.

With some exceptions, the crime of murder is committed, where a person:

  • of sound mind and discretion (i.e. sane):
  • unlawfully kills (i.e. not self-defence or other justified killing)
  • any reasonable creature (human being)
  • in being (born alive and breathing through its own lungs)
  • under the Queen's Peace
  • with intent to kill or cause grievous bodily harm.

There are other specific homicide offences, for example, infanticide, causing death by dangerous driving, and corporate manslaughter.

Find out more about prosecuting homicide

Teenager sentenced for Derby knife murder


A 16-year-old has been sentenced to 14 years in custody for the murder of 22-year-old Tom Webb, who was stabbed to death in the centre of Derby in January 2016.

Haris Mohammed stabbed Mr Webb after an argument triggered by a passing comment alleged to have been made by one of Mr Webb's friends. During the argument, Mohammed produced a butterfly knife he was carrying and stabbed Mr Webb in the chest.

He was prosecuted for murder, found guilty by a jury at Nottingham Crown Court and today sentenced to life in custody, with a minimum term of 14 years.

Karen Thompson, Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor for CPS East Midlands said: "Tom Webb's murder was a completely senseless and tragic waste of a young life. There was no need for Haris Mohammed to be carrying a knife, there was no need for any kind of confrontation, and there was certainly no need to use the knife on Mr Webb.

"These were all choices made by Haris Mohammed. He claimed that he had acted in self-defence, but the prosecution's case was that he was the aggressor.

"My heartfelt sympathies are with Tom's family and friends. They have had to endure a terrible loss and I hope that the conclusion of this case will enable them to start to rebuild their lives."


Tom Webb was killed on 19 January 2016. He was walking through the centre of Derby with two friends when one of them was heard to say that a girl with another group was 'fit'. The four boys in that group went to fetch their friends, including Mohammed, from the nearby McDonalds to follow and confront Mr Webb and his friends.

During the argument, Mohammed produced the knife and threatened Mr Webb with it. Mr Webb said to him that he (Mohammed) would not use the knife and would not stab him. Mohammed then stabbed Mr Webb in the chest and ran.

Five other young people are charged with violent disorder for their part in the argument. Proceedings against these individuals are still active.


Notes to Editors

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