Man who killed pub landlord on family holiday in Ingoldmells jailed for 10 years

Gareth Hart
Gareth Hart, from Barnsley, was 43-years-old when he was stabbed to death.

The heartbroken 12-year-old daughter of a man who was fatally stabbed while on holiday says she "dreams every night" of telling him she loves him.

Gareth Hart, 43, was killed whilst on holiday with his family in Ingoldmells, near Skegness.

The pub landlord from Barnsley was stabbed in the heart in the early hours of Friday, 6 April, 2023.

Joseph Allan Malek, 33, from Derbyshire, has been jailed for ten years after he was convicted of manslaughter, but cleared of murder, following a two-week trial at Lincoln Crown Court.

An emotional statement, written by Mr Hart's 12-year-old daughter, was read out by prosecuting barrister Christopher Donnellan KC, during the sentencing.

It said: "The feeling I have is quite literally indescribable. I went on holiday with five of us and only four of us came back, it's heartbreaking.

"Knowing I don't have a dad breaks my heart every time I think about it. I don't have anyone to take me to prom or walk me down the aisle and I never got to say goodbye."

She added: "She added: "Every night I dream of telling my dad 'goodnight and I love you.' I feel so heartbroken and upset, I can hardly explain it. I'm a 12-year-old girl who has to live the rest of my life without my dad because of the selfish act of one person."

Jurors heard from witnesses that an argument broke out between Mr Hart and a woman outside Fantasy Grill & Balti takeaway, possibly over a dog or a child.

At this point, Malek intervened. The argument between the victim and Malek became physical, and during this altercation Mr Hart suffered four stab wounds, one of which was a fatal wound to his chest.

A pen knife was used to inflict all four wounds and the weapon was located later in a puddle nearby, the court heard.

After the incident, Malek fled the scene back to Butlins, where he was staying, and then returned to Derbyshire. Malek handed himself in at Ripley Police Station later on the same day.

Mr Donnellan said: "He [Malek] did not like being punched. He took out his knife. When Mr Hart reached him again he was ready."

Gordon Aspden KC, mitigating, said: "It’s something that he carries with him every day of his life and is something that will never leave him.

"It is only after the thundering punch of a big man that knife came out."

He also read out a statement on behalf of the defendant. It stated that "there is not a moment that goes by" where he doesn't "think of the pain Mr Hart's family must be going through" and "wishes that he had the ability to go back in time and not go drinking that night."

His Honour Judge Simon Hirst said: "This is another example, if society needs it, about the danger of carrying knives.

"Some of Mr Malek’s actions were in self-defence but he went far beyond what he could have done."

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