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Man found guilty of murdering 18-year-old in Mapperley Park

November 3, 2017
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A man's been convicted of murdering an 18-year-old in Mapperley Park on Good Friday.

Nathan Towsey, 21, of Braunton Crescent in Gedling appeared at Nottingham Crown Court today (Friday 3 November) following an 11-day trial.

He was arrested after Matthew Rothery, of Woodborough Road, suffered a fatal stab wound at around 1am on Friday 14 April 2017.

Officers, who had been called by the ambulance service, found Matthew Rothery in a critical condition and treated him until paramedics arrived. He was taken to the Queen's Medical Centre but sadly passed away shortly afterwards.

An investigation was immediately launched by the East Midlands Special Operations Unit Major Crime Team and Towsey was subsequently arrested, charged and remanded into custody.

He pleaded not guilty to murder and guilty to possession of an offensive weapon. He denied the murder all along, claiming that he'd been set up and that he was acting in self-defence.

During the trial, the court heard how Matthew was at his flat when the defendant Towsey arrived with two of Matthew’s friends. There was a dispute between Matthew and Towsey over a bike he had previously borrowed which is when Towsey took out a knife and stabbed the victim. A witness in court stated that he stabbed his the leg and then attacked him again causing a defence injury to his arm before fleeing the address.

A post mortem revealed that Matthew Rothery had been stabbed twice (once in the leg and once in the arm) and attempts had been made to attack him again. The fatal blow was a wound to the knee which had cut a vital artery.

Detective Inspector Justine Wilson said: "This tragic case is one example of the devastating consequences of knife crime. A young man has needlessly lost his life. The court heard how Nathan Towsey was a low level street drug dealer and one who saw this as an opportunity to assert his control and inflict fear. This callous attack has devastated Matthews family who have lost a son, brother, cousin and nephew. I would like to praise them for their dignity held throughout this emotional trial and only hope that this brings some justice. I would also like to like to highlight the effects that carrying a knife can have."

"Nottinghamshire Police is committed to working with our partners and communities to reduce knife crime and the harm it can cause. We would encourage families to speak to their loved ones about the carrying of knives and remind people of the Crimestoppers service where they can anonymously report people who persistently carry them."

"I would also like to praise the investigation team for their tenacity and attention to detail which has led to this rightful conviction. I hope that this result goes out as a warning to all about the risks and devastating consequences carrying a knife can have."

Matthew’s mum Sharron Hartfield said: "The man who killed my son has today been convicted. This does not bring me any peace but it does bring some measure of justice for Matthew. My only hope for the future is that another family does not have to suffer the same as we have. Young men carrying and using knives is unforgiveable and devastating and this needs to be addressed in our society and legal system. It is not and can never be acceptable as the cost of such actions comes at far too high a price."

"Matthew was a cheeky, loving, kind hearted, affectionate son. He was a born entertainer, he loved life and everyone around him, I adored him as did his family. He was idolised by his younger brother and sister. To them he was awesome and funny and silly and they had the purest of love for him."

"He was not perfect and he tried to push boundaries but he had a heart of gold and would help anyone. He was still trying to find his way, his place, in life but he will now never have that opportunity."

"To carry a knife is pathetic regardless of the reason. It does not make you the big man or the top dog - to use a knife against another human being is beyond comprehension to those of us that have values. It goes against every moral fibre that we have, it is deplorable and sickening."

"Matthew lost his life as a result of being stabbed. I have lost someone that can never be replaced. In the years to come I am not going to meet another son, another Matthew. My baby boy had every right to go on and live a long and happy life filled with love and the sound of his own children's laughter. He will never get to do that and that for me as his mum is the worst punishment ever."

Nathan Towsey is due to be sentenced on Tuesday (7 November 2017).

101 is the number to call when you need to contact Nottinghamshire Police and it’s less urgent than a 999 call. Calls cost 15p, no matter how long the call lasts.