Knifeman guilty of murdering rugby player in rampage outside Bodmin nightclub

  • The family of Michael Riddiough-Allen read a statement outside court following the verdict.

A man who went on a 'knife rampage' outside a Bodmin nightclub has been found guilty of murder.

Jake Hill, 25, stabbed several people outside the Eclipse nightclub with a tactical combat knife, killing 32-year-old rugby player Michael Riddiough-Allen.

On Thursday 14 March, a jury found Hill guilty of murdering Michael Riddiough-Allen who Truro Crown Court heard had tried to break up a fight in the early hours of 30 April 2023.

The jury heard how Hill's victims were either stabbed or slashed after he collected the blade from a nearby hedge, where he had hidden it prior to entering the nightclub.

Michael Riddiough-Allen died after he was fatally stabbed outside the Eclipse nightclub in Bodmin Credit: Devon and Cornwall Police/PA

Hill has also been convicted of four counts of wounding with intent. He was cleared of a fifth count of wounding with intent.

Chelsea Powell, aged 22 of Granny’s Green, was found not guilty of murder and manslaughter. She was found guilty of perverting the course of justice.

Tia Taylor, also 22, of Northey Road, admitted charges during the trial of manslaughter and perverting the course of justice.

Court sketch of Jake Hill. Credit: Elizabeth Cook/PA

Powell and Taylor both deliberately lied to frustrate the police in their investigation.

Hill was found hiding in the loft at Taylor’s address following the stabbing after she told officers nobody else was home.

Following the verdict, the family of Michael Riddiough-Allen issued a statement.

It reads: "The journey that has led us here from the night Michael died, though long and painful, has opened our eyes to the growing problem in our society. This journey has given us the purpose and motivation to try to make a difference.

"Whilst we are grateful for our justice system and its ability to uphold the laws of our society, today’s verdicts are not a victory.

"There are no winners here. It is not just our family who lost someone they loved that night.

"The families of Tia Taylor, Chelsea Powell and Jake Hill, have been torn apart by the evil of that night - the presence of a knife.

"With no knife the devastating events of that night would not have happened. The presence and use of a knife turned to unmitigated violence, scarring injuries and haunting images that many will never forget.

"Michael watched that violence unfold in front of him, he felt a need to intervene to remove the threat and protect others. In this task, he lost his life.

"As four families we stand before you, together, to raise awareness of the damage that can be caused by carrying a knife. No good can come of it, only anger, hatred, loss and grief.

"We aim to educate and to work collaboratively to tackle the root of the problem. To help our young people understand that a knife does not protect you or make you popular. To give them the skills and tools needed to make better choices in the future.

"We stand here together, as a warning; if a change does not happen then many more families will stand on court steps, broken from the loss that knife crime brings."

Detective Constable Emma Norrish, of Devon & Cornwall Police’s Major Crime Investigation Team, said: “We welcome the verdict reached by the jury after hearing the evidence and deliberating on their decisions.

“This has been a long and complex investigation and trial and we now await the sentencing of the three defendants.

“I hope the outcome reached today will begin to bring some closure to Michael’s family and friends, and to the surviving victims.”

The case was adjourned for sentencing on 12 April.

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