Man convicted of Jason Betts killing one year on from his death

February 28 2016

A MAN has been convicted of the manslaughter of Jason Betts, who died from a head injury inflicted as punishment for owing money for drugs.

A MAN has been convicted of the manslaughter of Jason Betts, who died from a head injury inflicted as punishment for owing money for drugs.
Mr Betts, 38, who was described by police as vulnerable, was found unconscious at his flat in Celestine Road, Yate, on March 5, 2015, by a friend.
He was taken to hospital but his life support machine was switched off in the early hours of the following day.
A post-mortem examination concluded he had suffered a head injury which had caused a bleed to the brain.
Nathan Skeen, 29, of Lewisham, London, was found guilty of manslaughter and wounding with intent after a five-week trial at Bristol Crown Court.
Nixon Apire, 31, of Great North Road, Barnet, pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to wounding with intent.
Both previously admitted charges of being concerned in the supply of class-A drugs - cocaine and heroin.
As Yate and Sodbury Voice went to press, a date was still to be set for sentencing of the pair.
During the course of the police investigation, witnesses reported Apire and Skeen were responsible for assaulting Mr Betts more than a week before his death. He was stabbed in the leg, had cigarettes stubbed out on his face and hit over the head with a bottle and a glass.
Skeen’s conviction for manslaughter relates to a subsequent assault he carried out on Mr Betts, which led to his death.
Detective Superintendent Andy Bevan, said: “Jason was a vulnerable man who had significant health and drug addiction issues.
“Skeen and Apire callously took advantage of Jason’s vulnerability and coerced him into selling class-A drugs, including crack cocaine and heroin, on their behalf on a low-level basis in the Yate area.
“They had a suffocating control over Jason and when they felt he owed them money, they exacted their revenge by assaulting him. In the assault carried out by Skeen, Jason suffered the injury which led to his death.
“Jason’s death has had a devastating effect on his mother, family and close friends.”
Neighbourhood Inspector Clive Summerill said after Mr Betts’ death, there was an extensive and significant crackdown on class-A drug dealers targeting Yate from other parts of the country.