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Teenager killed lawyer with stolen screwdriver

YOUNGSTER Ewen Ireland, who stabbed a father to death with a screwdriver he’d stolen from Poundland, can now be named after turning 18.

Ireland, from Newcastle, killed solicitor Peter Duncan, 52, in a targeted attack at a busy shopping centre. The murderer, whose identity could not be revealed by the media when he was still 17 and a juvenile, had a previous history of violence.

Newcastle Crown Court heard how Mr Duncan, an in-house lawyer for a multi-national maritime firm, was on his way home and was, simply, “in the wrong place at the wrong time”.

He crossed paths with Ireland at an entrance to Newcastle’s Eldon Square shopping centre. The solicitor raised his arm to let the teenager past at the doorway, but Ireland flew into a rage, which ended with “family man” Mr Duncan being stabbed in the heart.

He collapsed outside a Greggs establishment in the shopping centre, which was still busy with

tea-time shoppers on 14th August.

Ireland, a serial offender, was still 17 and classed as a minor, so his identity could not be reported. Last month, however, having turned 18, he admitted the murder when appearing at Newcastle Crown Court.

Now that he has become an adult, section 45 of the Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999 no longer applies. But, law or no law, withholding the killer’s identity caused outrage.

Many people commented on social media that if Ireland felt he was old enough to carry a weapon, he was old enough to be named as a killer.

Ireland had been looking for another teenager he’d had a row with over some cigarettes, when he murdered devoted father Mr Duncan. At a previous bail hearing, prosecutor Kevin Wardlaw said the teen and Mr Duncan came into contact with each other by chance, when they were walking in opposite directions.

Mr Wardlaw added: “The deceased raised his arm to let the defendant get past. It is captured on CCTV footage. The defendant took exception to that, took hold of the deceased and a struggle ensued.”

Ireland was on bail for affray at the time of the killing, and had 17 previous convictions.

Mr Duncan managed to push Ireland away, which is when the teenager stabbed him in the heart, the court heard. CCTV cameras tracked the killer’s movements through the city centre, and the murder weapon was later found.

Newcastle Crown Court heard that Ireland had 17 convictions for 31 offences between 2017 and 2019, including an incident in which he grabbed a knife during a family argument. On another occasion, he threatened a driver with a blade after being challenged about drinking alcohol on the bus.

Mr Duncan’s family said in a statement after his murder: ‘Peter was a kind and caring man, who was always first to help others. He was a devoted father, husband, son, brother, uncle and friend, and loved by all who knew him. His death will leave such a huge hole in our lives and he’ll be deeply missed by us all. He’ll be in our hearts and thoughts every day.”

Ireland, currently in custody, will be sentenced in December, after psychiatric reports are prepared.

 

 

 

Short URL: http://www.canarianweekly.com/?p=50323

Posted by on Oct 11 2019. Filed under Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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