Sheppey; 83 Years In Jail For Murder Gang
Four men and a teenage boy have been jailed for a total of 83 years for luring a former friend to a secluded Sheppey beach before launching a fatal attack with baseball bats.
This is the statement from Kent Police.
Mark Terry, 44, and son Matthew Terry, 21, Christopher Bones, 21, and a 16 year old were found guilty following a 10-week trial by a jury of the murder of Gary Pocock.
All four were sentenced to life in prison when they appeared at Maidstone Crown Court on Friday 9 May.
Mark Terry will serve a minimum of 26 years, Matthew Terry a minimum of 19 years, the 16 year old a minimum of 13 years and Bones a minimum of 18 years.
A fifth person, Jamie West, 19, was found guilty of manslaughter and sentenced to seven years with half the sentence to be served on licence.
Officers from Kent Police were called at just before 6am on 7 August 2013 to Warden Bay Road in Leysdown after a body was found on the beach between Little Groves caravan site and Isle of Sheppey Holiday Village.
Mr Pocock, 34, of Dagenham in Essex, was beaten to death following claims he had molested a teenage girl and his body, left half-naked from the waist down, was dragged across a beach in Leysdown and dumped in the sea.
His body was found with significant head injuries on a secluded part of the beach by a member of the public out using his metal detector.Two baseball bats, one of which had been broken in two, as well as a trail of blood leading to the beach were found by officers near his body.
Mr Pocock was identified 36 hours after his murder by his partner after an image of a distinctive signet ring was released to the media by detectives working on the case.
In what was proved to be the start of a web of lies concocted by the group, they led Mr Pocock's partner into believing he had gone off with another woman after having spent the night out drinking with them in Leysdown.
Officers from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate then arrested and charged Mark Terry and Matthew Terry, 20, both of Grantham Road in Manor Park, Essex, Bones, of Dorothy Gardens in Dagenham, West, of Cliffe View Gardens in Warden and Zborowski - who was 15 at the time - of Sea View Gardens, Warden, with murder. The teenager was also found guilty of perverting the course of justice after providing false statements to police.
The jury heard Mark Terry had called a meeting at his chalet on 6 August in which Matthew Terry, West, Bones, the teenager and another friend - who refused to be part of the plot - were told Mr Pocock had sexually assaulted a teenage girl. It was there that Mark Terry proposed giving Mr Pocock a beating as punishment for his actions and they arranged to take him out later that night for a drinking session in Leysdown.
The evening began at Terry's chalet before they moved on to Merlins in Leysdown Road at about 9.55pm. After several drinks, they left at 11.25pm and made for The Talk of The Town pub on The Promenade. Just before entering the pub, Mark Terry and Mr Pocock were captured on CCTV heading to the beach to urinate in the sea.
They then joined up with the rest of the group and drank together and played pool.
Matthew Terry left the group in Merlins and collected his car. He then met with West and the pair drove along Warden Bay Road towards the beach at about 11.20pm to collect the baseball bats.
Mark Terry, Bones, and the teenager then left the pub with Mr Pocock and walked along the beach in the direction of Warden Bay Road.
He was in fact walking into an ambush as West and Matthew Terry suddenly appeared with baseball bats and the group began savagely striking the victim to the head and body. He tried in vain to escape, but was set upon again and beaten to death.
His body was then dragged down the beach towards the sea where they stripped his lower half before throwing the baseball bats and his clothing into the water.
The body was then taken into the water by Matthew Terry and Bones in the hope it would drift out to sea.
After returning to their chalet at just before 1am on 7 August, Mark Terry ordered the group to remove their clothing and take showers.
Matthew Terry and Bones returned to the scene of the crime at 3.30am to check the body had been taken out to sea and reported to the rest of the group that it had gone.
Following the discovery of the body, in an attempt to cover up their murderous plot, Matthew Terry visited the victim's partner, who was staying in a nearby chalet, to inform her that Mr Pocock had left them at the end of the night to go home with another woman. She went to see Mark Terry who confirmed the story.
After voicing concerns that the body on the beach might be her partner's, Mark Terry concocted a plan to prevent her from reporting it to police.
At just after 11pm on the same day she received a message from an unknown mobile number which said: 'Can I come home tonight x'
After exchanging messages with someone purporting to be Mr Pocock, she rang the number and spoke with a man who confirmed her partner was in Barking.
Police carried out a check on the phone and spoke with the owner who said he had been approached by a person at the bus stop in Barking claiming to be Gary Pocock and asked to use his phone.
Through CCTV, detectives were able to prove that it was in fact Matthew Terry.
On 8 August, after seeing media reports of a ring, his partner called police and reported Mr Pocock's disappearance.
During interview all five denied the charges.
However, during a fourth interview in which detectives disclosed there were witness accounts of the men showering after returning to the pub, the teenager admitted he was present and claimed Mark Terry, Matt Terry and Chris Bones were responsible for Mr Pocock's murder.
He admitted it was pre-planned and that Mark Terry had said they were going to beat Pocock for 'touching' the girl.
During interview he said: "I knew it was going to happen but I didn't know when or where. Chris seemed all bubbly up for a fight. I put on that I was happy..I was panicking.
"Matt run over smacked him all over the head, I've seen him go down and then he tried to run.
"Then I saw the hit, connected straight on the back of his head. Gary fell to the floor screaming, he couldn't run cos Mark, Chris and Matt were punching, kicking him, hitting him with the bat. Then there was an explosion of blood.
"Mark was opening his legs and stamping on him seven to eight times.
"I saw Matt hit him with the bat 20-30 times, bringing it down from around his head."