Killer Kyle Major avoids jail for drug dealing while still on licence for Blackpool dad's manslaughter
A cowardly teenage thug who killed a father-of-two with a single punch has been back before the courts again for serious drug offences.
Kyle Major was released from his jail term for the manslaughter of Blackpool man Paul Walker, before his 18th birthday, but returned to a life of crime while still on licence.
However Judge Graham Knowles agreed Major, who was 17 when the offences happened, was vulnerable, had been exploited and had shown remorse.
The court heard his baby daughter, born a few days ago with lung problems, was in intensive care in Manchester, and that Major had shown he could change his life since the offences were committed.
Major, now of Fairhurst Street, Blackpool, was charged by Lancashire police after Operation Moth - a probe into county lines drugs gangs where a drug racket thought to be controlled by criminals from Liverpool were organising drugs to be dealt by people the judge branded "small fry", including Major and his two co defendants.
The 18-year-old admits five counts of supplying class A drugs.
Judge Graham Knowles QC said: "From September 2017 until March this year, undercover police officers were posing as drug abusers in Blackpool in order to buy drugs using dealer phones that it appears, from the evidence, were being controlled from Liverpool.
"The usual commonplace system was a text would go out saying that phone was on. Drugs, usually cocaine and heroin, were available and orders would come in - in your cases from police officers - and whoever was above you would give you your instructions of where to go, who to meet, and what to hand over in return for cash.
"In other words you three were instantly replaceable. You were all vulnerable to exploitation to different extents and for different reasons, and now I must sentence you for very serious offending indeed.
"It is to be hoped that at least comparable resources were put into detecting and arresting and prosecuting those wicked people who chose purely for profit to exploit people like you."
He said sentencing had to reflect the people whose homes are burgled, who are robbed at knife point and the shop owners whose premises are stolen from "for people to get the £10 and £20 notes that are out into your hands when deals like these are done."
Jake Ogden, homeless through problems with stepmother and was 17 when he began offending, living on the streets and offending was with a view to provide means for himself.
The court heard Major was working to repay a cannabis related debt having got in with the wrong crowd.
Judge Knowles added: "You were involved through a combination of naivety and exploitation."
He agreed to suspend his sentence of 22 months detention in a YOI for two years, on account of his remorse and his demonstration since the offences that he could change.
He must do 200 hours unpaid work and a rehabilitation activity.
Co defendant Mark Hewson, 31, of Raikes Parade, Blackpool, was jailed for two years and seven months, while Jake Ogden, 18, of Mains Lane, Poulton-le-Fylde, Preston, received 50 months detention.
It is just four years since Major fatally hit 52-year-old Paul Walker in the back of the head in the early hours of New Year’s Day 2014.
Mr Walker, described by his family as "a lovely man with a big heart", had lost his way after leaving his sister Harriet’s New Year’s Eve party "in good spirits".
The Celtic fan was making his way to his Normoss Road home, in Grange Park, when he came across a group of youths, including Major, on Sutton Place, who told him where he was.
Just moments after the 14-year-old was heard to wish Mr Walker a "Happy New Year", he followed him down the street and floored him with one punch.
Preston Crown Court heard the victim was found face down in a pool of his own blood, with his hands still in his pockets.
He was taken to Blackpool Victoria Hospital where he died from head, face and neck injuries.