Blackpool thug who stamped on neighbour's head after punching him convicted of murder

A man who killed his neighbour by punching him to the floor and stamping on his head has been convicted of murder.

Wednesday, 5th May 2021, 6:23 pm

Andrew Claydon, 45, has today (May 5) been found guilty of the murder of Matthew Pearson.

Mr Pearson, 42, died on August 2 following an assault in Lytham Road, close to the junction with Bournemouth Road, at around 6.45pm on July 18, 2020.

A post mortem examination found Mr Pearson, who lived in a flat on Lytham Road, died from blunt trauma head injuries.

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Claydon, of Lytham Road, Blackpool, admitted manslaughter but denied the murder charge but was convicted following a trial at Preston Crown Court.

Det Insp Mark Dickinson, of Lancashire Constabulary’s Major Investigation Team, said: "The true motive for this attack in a public place on an early summer’s evening may never be fully known.

"Matthew Pearson was extremely vulnerable and was suffering from a number of medical complaints which meant he posed no threat whatsoever to Andrew Claydon, and he had no prospect of protecting himself from an assault.

"The assault itself was both brutal and cowardly in nature. Matthew was punched with no indication an attack was coming, then thrown to the ground, probably causing his head to hit the kerb.

Andrew Claydon, 45, has been found guilty of the murder of Matthew Pearson. (Credit: Lancashire Police)

"It seems likely that he was already unconscious as Claydon violently stamped on the side of his head. Matthew then lay unconscious for over two minutes before slowly picking himself up and staggering back to his flat, only around 40 yards away.

"The damage to Matthew's skull and brain had already been done by that stage, and despite receiving medical attention and specialist care at Royal Preston, doctors were, sadly, unable to save him."

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CCTV footage was recovered which identified that Andrew Claydon was responsible for the assault on Lytham Road.

Matthew Pearson died in August last year after being assaulted.

The footage showed that Claydon was on Lytham Road with others when Matthew Pearson came out of his home address and crossed Lytham Road to speak to Claydon.

Claydon was then seen, with no apparent provocation, to punch Matthew Pearson to the ground before stamping on him as he lay unconscious.

Claydon was located and arrested on July 20.

He was initially charged with assault occasioning grievous bodily harm, but this was amended to murder after Mr Pearson died on August 2.

Claydon's trainers had Matthew Pearson's blood on them. (Credit: Lancashire Police)

Detectives identified several witnesses, and others came forward as a result of appeals in the local media, which further assisted the investigation.

By piecing together CCTV, witness evidence, a forensic scene examination and specialist pathology evidence, the investigation team were able to prove that Mr Pearson’s fatal injuries could only have been inflicted by Claydon on July 18.

Claydon will be sentenced later this month.

Det Insp Mark Dickinson added: "I would like to take the opportunity to thank those who reported the matter to the police and ensured that everything possible was done to help Matthew Pearson, also the witnesses who came forward and assisted with the investigation.

"Matthew's family have maintained their dignity throughout the investigation and subsequent trial, and they continue to have my deepest sympathies."

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