The man who murdered church organist Alan Greaves is tonight beginning a twenty-five year jail term. His accomplice, convicted of manslaughter has been sentenced to nine years.
The victim's widow says she is happy with the punishment, despite the fact that one of them could be released in less than five years.
A man who battered a church organist to death as he walked to Midnight Mass has been jailed for a minimum of 25 years by a judge, who told him: "Why you wished to inflict violence on another human being on Christmas Eve is known only to you."
Mr Justice Teare made the comments at Sheffield Crown Court as he sentenced Jonathan Bowling to life in prison for the murder of lay preacher Alan Greaves, 68. He said:
Why you wished to inflict violence on another human being on Christmas Eve is known only to you. But you did it.
You chose your victim at random. Alan Greaves happened to be in front of you, on his way to serve the community, as he had always done, and you decided to inflict violence on him.
The widow of a church organist who was battered to death on Christmas Eve has said today she was "happy" with the sentences that two of the men received.
Jonathan Bowling was told he must serve a minimum of 25 years in prison for the murder of Alan Greaves, while Ashley Foster was jailed for nine years for manslaughter.
Outside Sheffield Crown Court Maureen Greaves said: "I really am extremely pleased with the result today.
"To think Ashley's got nine years is the very best we could have got in the circumstances of the manslaughter.
"To think that Jonathan's got 25 minimum and to think he'll probably never come out, I really am wonderfully pleased with the result."
A 22-year-old man has been told he must serve a minimum of 25 years in prison for the murder of a church organist he battered to death in Sheffield on Christmas Eve.
Jonathan Bowling admitted murdering Alan Greaves, 68, in the city's High Green area as the pensioner walked to play the organ at Midnight Mass.
Bowling was jailed for life at Sheffield Crown Court and Ashley Foster, also 22, was jailed for nine years for Mr Greaves's manslaughter.
Ashley Foster, 22, has been sentenced to nine years behind bars for manslaughter.
Jonathan Bowling gets life in prison with a minimum sentence of 25 years for the murder of Alan Greaves.
Bowling has a 'personality disorder' and is 'genuinely remorseful' for what he has done, court told. #MurderTrial
The two men who killed church organist Alan Greaves last Christmas Eve are in the dock at Sheffield Crown Court awaiting their sentence.
Jonathan Bowling, 22, has admitted to the murder of Mr.Greaves.
Ashley Foster, also 22, was yesterday found guilty of manslaughter after a trial.
Both men are being kept apart in the dock-flanked by six prison guards. Bowling was brought into court in handcuffs.
For the past hour, prosecuting barrister Robert Smith has been summarising the evidence against them.
He described them as: "Not only friends, but virtually brothers".
Bowling's father had a relationship with Foster's mother.
The court was told that Bowling has a history of violence, starting at 15 when he was convicted of wounding. He also once threatened police with a hammer.
Mr. Smith described the ferocity of the attack on Mr. Greaves who died three days later.
– Robert Smith, prosecuting
The local community has been deprived of a man who made a selfless contribution to the lives of others.
The two men convicted of killing a church organist from Sheffield are due to be sentenced today.
Alan Greaves was attacked on his way to church on Christmas Eve. Jonathan Bowling confessed to his murder, Ashley Forster was cleared, but found guilty of his manslaughter.