Bournemouth man jailed for six years for manslaughter

Carl Woolley pleaded guilty to manslaughter in December 2020 Credit: ITV News Meridian

A man has been sentenced to six years in jail for the manslaughter of a man from Bournemouth.

33-year-old Carl Woolley, of no fixed abode, was sentenced today (Friday 26th February) at Bournemouth Crown Court. He had previously pleased guilty to the crime on the 22nd December.

At around 10pm on Sunday 13th September last year Dorset Police received a report of an assault at the entrance to The Avenue car park.

It was reported that 59-year-old Stephen Jeffries, from Bournemouth, was involved in an argument with a group of people near to the Flirt Café in The Triangle.

He walked off along Avenue Road, but was followed by Carl Woolley, who was part of the group.

Woolley punched then punched him in the face, causing him to collapse to the floor.

Stephen's family say he was "A kind and loving father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend who loved life". Credit: Dorset Police

At 6AM on Monday 14th September Woolley approached officers at the cordon and said was responsible for the incident. He was arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm.

Stephen Jeffries died in hospital on the evening of Tuesday 15th September.

Woolley was subsequently charged with murder. He then pleaded guilty to manslaughter, which was accepted by the prosecution service.

Following the sentencing, the family of Mr Jeffries has issued the following statement:

“The outcome of the trial will never be enough in terms of justice. The loss we feel as a family will never be justified. A life has been taken without regards.

“Due to the current circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic we feel cheated of the opportunity to stand before the court and to witness the sentencing of the man who has caused such devastation and changed our lives and worlds forever. We did not get to stand before this man and to look him in the eye and read out our statements of what catastrophic loss and grief we are all subjected to and to see if he is filled with remorse".

Stephen was a kind and loving father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend who loved life. Stephen will be dearly missed by all who loved him, family and friends. We would like to thank the medical teams at Poole General Hospital who cared for him and supported the family during this time.

Stephen Jeffries' family

Detective Inspector Wayne Seymour, of Dorset Police’s Major Crime Investigation Team , said: “This tragic case highlights that punching someone, just like Carl Woolley did that night, can have devastating fatal consequences"

“I hope the sentence handed out today will provide Mr Jeffries’ family and friends with some closure and serve as a reminder to the public about the dangers that just one mindless and avoidable punch can have.”