Soldier sentenced to 28 months’ imprisonment for manslaughter of man on New Year’s Day


Daryl Talbot, 22 from Larkhill (Wiltshire) was today sentenced to 28 months at Winchester Crown Court for the manslaughter of John Paul Garland, 34, from Amesbury, who died on 1 January 2011, outside the New Inn Pub in Amesbury (Wiltshire).

Daryl Talbot pleaded guilty on 24 January 2012 at Salisbury Crown Court of involuntarily killing Mr Garland after punching him violently, which caused him to fall on the ground.

Following the sentence, Simon Edward, Principal Crown Advocate for the Crown Prosecution Service in Wessex said: "John Paul Garland, went to the New Inn Pub to celebrate New Year 2011 in his local village of Amesbury, where he grew up and was well known by locals for having played football there and regularly socialising with his friends.

"Sadly, he would never celebrate New Year's Day as he met his death when his path crossed that of Daryl Talbot, the defendant in this case.

"The court heard that Talbot had been drinking that night with his girlfriend Alexandra Smith and became angry because he believed she was looking at other men.

"CCTV footage showed Miss Smith leaving the pub's smoking area at 03:25am, a few moments later she can be seen talking with John Paul Garland who was also in the car park. This was the last time that Mr Garland was seen alive.

"Four minutes later, Miss Smith and the defendant are seen on CCTV quickly, leaving the pub's car park. During that time, Talbot launched a violent attack and the injuries found on Mr Garland's body suggest that he received several violent blows and kicks, to which he did not reply.

"Talbot, was a serving soldier at the Royal School of Artillery and was very fit at the time of the attack. Mr Garland was born with shortened arms, and Talbot had noticed this, but at no point did the fact that he had a physical advantage over the victim made him change his mind.

"He was charged with murder but pleaded guilty to manslaughter once he knew that Miss Smith would be a prosecution witness following service of a summons to give evidence.

"We met with Mr Garlands family to explain the basis of Talbots plea prior to its acceptance.

"John Paul Garland died suddenly and tragically only because he crossed the path of Daryl Talbot, whose jealousy and possessive behaviour led him to commit a terrible crime.

"We welcome the fact that he pleaded guilty and our thoughts are with Mr Garland's family and his friends, in particular his parents who have lost their beloved son."