Westcliff man sentenced after killing stranger in random crossbow attack

A man who admitted killing a complete stranger with a crossbow in a random attack at a pub in Westcliff just before Christmas last year has been sentenced.

Forty-four year-old Alfred Turner left his home in Station Road, Westcliff at around 6.30pm on December 23 armed with a crossbow and made his way to the Lamb and Lion pub.

CCTV from inside the Lamb and Lion showed Turner entering the pub from the door opposite the bar.

VICTIM: Dave Peck

He then fired the crossbow and hit 51 year old Dave Peck, who was sat on a bar stool opposite the door.

Mr Peck, who was not known to his attacker, was hit in the chest and as he fell to the floor other people in the pub tried to help him.

Turner left the pub an walked towards The Leas, discarding the reloaded crossbow, before continuing towards Pier Hill.

He was arrested less than 90 minutes after the incident and was later charged with murder.

Turner denied the charge, instead pleading guilty to a charge of manslaughter by diminished responsibility.

At Basildon Crown Court today (Thursday October 26 ) he was given a life sentence with a section 45A hospital order.

This means he will be detained at a mental health facility and if fit will then be sent to prison.

He was given a determinate sentence of eight years and will then only be released depending on a parole board decision.

Detective Chief Inspector Louise Metcalfe, who led the investigation, said: “My thoughts, and those of my team are with Dave Peck’s family.

“He was dearly loved by those close to him and missed every day.

“Nothing will bring Dave back but I hope the conclusion of this investigation will help his friends and family move forward.”