Moment killer, 37, is arrested after attack on his ex-partner's father

Moment killer, 37, is arrested after deadly attack on his ex-partner’s father, 64, during doorstep confrontation as he is jailed for nine years

  • James Rutherford overpowered Andrew Saint and punched him to the ground
  • Mr Saint, 64, was ‘furious’ about an earlier confrontation involving his daughter
  • Rutherford was caught on police body worn camera as he was led away by police
  • He was arrested for assault but Mr Saint later died from his injuries 

Police body worn camera footage has captured the moment a killer appeared to be in a daze as he was arrested by police just minutes after a deadly attack on his son’s grandfather. 

James Rutherford, 37, overpowered Andrew Saint, 64, and punched him to the ground before kicking him in the head when he turned up at his door in Bedlington, Northumberland, last February.

Newcastle Crown Court heard Mr Saint was ‘furious’ about an earlier confrontation involving his daughter Toni Saint and Rutherford at her home. He went to Rutherford’s home to speak to him about it.

During the violence that followed, Mr Saint suffered a devastating brain injury and died in hospital three weeks later.

Rutherford, who was initially arrested for assault, was caught on police body worn camera as he was led away from the scene of the fatal attack.

Video has emerged showing James Rutherford after he was arrested for the assault of Andrew Saint, who later died 

He has now been jailed for nine years. In a victim statement, Toni said: ‘I can’t believe my dad died as a result of James’ actions.

‘I am devastated at the loss of my dad and also devastated that (my son’s) dad has killed his grandad. How does a child understand that?

Rutherford (pictured) has been jailed for nine years at Newcastle Crown Court

‘Every time I close my eyes I see my dad. My last memory is him lying in hospital, knowing he would never come home. My dad can never be replaced, he was my hero.

‘He would do anything for me and my children. He doted on his grandchildren.’

In a victim impact statement, Andrew’s wife of 30 years, Janice, said her husband’s death had left a huge void in her life.

Mrs Saint last saw her husband when he left the house to visit the supermarket to pick up food for packed lunches. While he was out he decided to visit Rutherford and never came back.

The statement read: ‘Every day I get up and have to face the fact that Andrew is no longer here. This is hard when we had spent pretty much every day of our married life together. My whole daily routine has changed since his death and I struggle every day to deal with this. I am still struggling to make sense of it all.

‘Whatever sentence James Rutherford gets will never compensate me for the loss of my husband, the loss of a father and loss of a grandfather.

‘This has left me destroyed and broken, I can be going about my daily routine and all of a sudden break down in tears when I think about Andrew and our time together.’

Rutherford, whose claim that Mr Saint had confronted him with a knife was rejected, was convicted of manslaughter after a trial at Newcastle Crown Court.

Jurors cleared him of murder.

Rutherford, whose claim that Mr Saint (pictured) had confronted him with a knife was rejected, was convicted of manslaughter after a trial at Newcastle Crown Court

John Elvidge QC, defending, said Rutherford will have to ‘come to terms’ with the fact he killed his own son’s grandad. Pictured, Rutherford at the time of his arrest 

Judge Penny Moreland sentenced Rutherford to nine years behind bars. The judge said Rutherford was a ‘tall, strong man’ whereas Mr Saint was a ‘diminutive man in his 60s in poor health’.

Judge Moreland told Rutherford: ‘You readily overpowered him, you punched him to the ground and then, I am satisfied, you kicked him, at least once, to the head.’

John Elvidge QC, defending, said Rutherford will have to ‘come to terms’ with the fact he killed his own son’s grandfather.

Mr Elvidge added that there was no premeditation and added: ‘He does regret the consequences of his actions.’

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Chief Inspector Ed Small from Northumbria Police’s Homicide and Major Enquiry Team added: ‘This has been an upsetting case for Mr Saint’s family and I am pleased with the jury’s verdict.

‘This is a tragic incident which will forever affect the lives of all those involved. The impact of Andrew’s death on the Saint family has been utterly devastating and they have shown nothing but courage and dignity throughout these court proceedings. I hope this verdict bring them one step closer to the closure they deserve.’

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