Doncaster man jailed for murdering Mateusz Chojnowski after catching him 'breaking into his car'

Steven Ling denied murder but was found guilty after a seven day trial. Credit: South Yorkshire Police

A man from Doncaster has been jailed for murder after carrying out a "violent" attack on a man caught breaking into his car.

Mateusz Chojnowski suffered injuries so severe a fingerprint scanner was needed to identify him.

Mr Chojnowski was found by two members of the public, lying on a grass verge, covered in blood on South Parade on 2nd July.

He had injuries to his head, abdomen and chest and despite the best efforts of officers and paramedics, the 28-year-old was pronounced dead in hospital a short time later.

The court heard that Steven Ling had attacked Mr Chojnowski after finding him sat inside his car, having broken into it.

Ling, aged 38, of Park Drain, Westwoodside, later handed himself into police when he learned that Mr Chojnowski had died.

Murder victim in Doncaster named as Mateusz Chojnowski Credit: MEN Media

Det Ch Insp Rebecca Hodgman, senior investigating officer, said: "The attack on Mateusz, which was captured on CCTV, showed a violent and sustained assault by a single attacker, lasting around 20 minutes. "Later that day, at around 2.45pm, our control room received a call from Steven Ling’s solicitor. He said Ling had been involved in a serious incident in Doncaster, and that he wished to hand himself in. "Ling attended Doncaster Police Station at 5pm that day, and was arrested on suspicion of murder."

Ling accepted he had been in what he described as an "altercation" with Mateusz, after finding him in his car. But he denied murder, saying he had "no intention of causing serious harm to anyone". 

He was sentenced to life in prison on Tuesday, 20 December, at Sheffield Crown Court, after being convicted of murder on 13 December following a trial that took place over seven days.

Ling will serve a minimum term of 16 years in jail.

DCI Hodgman added: "Throughout his trial, Ling denied murder saying he never intended to seriously hurt Mateusz that night.

"I am pleased that the jury saw through that lie finding him guilty of murder, and that he is now beginning a lengthy jail sentence. "I want to commend Mateusz’s family for the bravery they have shown throughout this trial. I know that nothing will make up for the loss of their son, but I hope that Ling’s sentence will go some way towards helping them to rebuild their lives. "A lot of hard work was put in by many officers to get to where we are today. I'm glad that work has paid off and this sentence has been handed out to Mateusz's killer."

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