Wrexham man who stabbed friend in heart and posted videos of dead body on Snapchat, sentenced
A man who stabbed his friend in the heart and posted videos of his dead body on Snapchat has been sentenced.
Mark Harley Jones, 20, from Chester Road in Wrexham, initially looked down in the dock but stared straight ahead as the Judge, Mr Justice Stephen Eyre, began sentencing him.
The judge told Jones he killed the victim to gain notoriety.
Jones had denied murder. He claimed he acted in self-defence and blamed his actions on having ADHD. However he was found guilty of murder at Mold Crown Court on Thursday 16 March.
Kyle Walley, 19, died on his kitchen floor in the village of Rhosymedre on 11 July 2021. He had been expecting to watch the Euro 2020 final between England and Italy with Jones.
Jones had filmed videos of himself and the victim drinking, where Jones can be seen making stabbing gestures towards the victim whilst his back was turned.
Videos were also shown to the court of the victim lying dead, as Jones kicked him.
In another video, he showed the camera, his bloodstained hands and said he had “stabbed up“ Mr Walley and was “going to do time”.
The jury had been told Jones had an obsession with knives and an “immaturity”.
A statement on behalf of the victim’s father and their wider family was read out in court.
Robert Walley said Kyle was one of five children who had attended Ruabon High School and was a “happy go lucky child who got on with everyone”.
Prior to his death, he had been offered an apprenticeship as an electrician and “had the best days of his life taken from him”, his father’s statement read.
He added that his son’s murder was “horrific” and made worse as it was posted on social media: "I can still recall people calling us about what was being circulated online," the statement read.
"The social media aspect has been difficult, knowing our son’s murder was filmed and circulated locally, nationally and possibly internationally is horrific. People have made comments and the social media intrusion seemed never ending."
Kyle’s family added: “Kyle can never be replaced and will always be missed by his close family and friends. He will always remain in our thoughts and in our hearts. We would like to thank North Wales Police and the Crown Prosecution Service for the support they have shown us during this awful time.
“Finally, we would like to thank our friends, family and the public who have shown us goodwill throughout. We hope today’s sentence will remind people of the dangers associated with knives.”
Sentencing Jones, Mr Justice Stephen Eyre told him the victim "had befriended you and he invited you into his home. In return for his friendship and hospitality, you killed him".
Jones was sentenced to life in prison and will serve a minimum of 16 years and 126 days.
Discussing the case, Detective Chief Inspector Chris Bell, the Senior Investigating Officer, explained: "For Kyle's young life to be cut so cruelly short in such tragic and unnecessary circumstances is beyond comprehension.
"Kyle was much loved by his family and friends and I recognise that no words or verdict will ever bring back this young man, but I hope today's outcome will bring a small sense of peace to Kyle’s family."
He added: "North Wales Police will not tolerate the use of weapons to inflict injury to others. I urge you to think long and hard about carrying weapons in the future as the consequences of doing so often result in two families being destroyed.
"I would urge anyone who knows of a friend or someone in their community who carries a knife to please contact independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers anonymously and report it."
Andrew Warman of the CPS explained: “Kyle Walley was planning on watching the football with his friend but instead he was brutally murdered by a person he trusted to be in his home.
“The fatal act being published on social media is shocking and must have been horrific for those who witnessed what had happened.
“The CPS proved that Jones was not acting in self-defence, as he had claimed, and this conviction brings him to justice.
“Our thoughts remain with Kyle’s family and friends who have shown great strength throughout the Court process.”