A man has been found guilty of the manslaughter of a Croydon man beaten to death in a row over drugs dealing.
Jason Lodge, a 39-year-old father of eight, was convicted at the Old Bailey following the death of 55-year-old David Petch in New Addington in April last year.
The court heard on the evening of Saturday April 14, 2012 Lodge had been out drinking and went to Petch’s home around 23:30 where he punched, stamped and kicked the victim several times until he fell to the floor.
Petch took several blows to the head suffering from a bruised skull and a fractured cheekbone. His condition deteriorated at Croydon University Hospital and he died several days later from severe head injuries. The cause of death was diagnosed as a fractured skull that triggered bleeding on the brain.
Petch claimed he was acting in self-defence. In court, Lodge’s partner said that Petch attacked Lodge with a baseball bat, after Lodge had asked him to stop selling cocaine to his partner’s sister.
After the incident Lodge fled to Rye in Kent but gave himself up to the police later. Lodge will be later sentenced in court next month.
“It was a senseless act of violence that has left his family devastated,” said investigating officer Detective Chief Inspector Graeme Gwyn.