Man Jailed For Teen's Manslaughter

26 January 2017, 12:38

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A man has been jailed for five-and-a-half years after pleaded guilty to killing a 17-year-old girl by leaving her to drown after she fell into the sea off the Kent coast.

Michael Bowditch, 21, of Prestedge Avenue in Ramsgate admitted manslaughter by gross negligence of college student Becky Morgan, who was found dead off Broadstairs last year.

Police were called to the Port of Ramsgate at 5am on Sunday May 1 amid concerns for the welfare of a girl, and Becky's body was recovered two-and-a-half miles away.

Prosecutor Simon Taylor told Maidstone Crown Court that the pair had met the night before at a birthday party before ending up at the Harbour Arm in Ramsgate.

Mr Taylor said: "By the basis of plea, Mr Bowditch accepts that, although he cannot say exactly how Becky Morgan came to fall into the sea, once she fell in he failed to take any steps to try to assist her.

"It is the failure to take any steps to prevent Miss Morgan's death after she fell into the sea which forms the basis of his culpability for manslaughter.''

Sentencing Bowditch, Judge Jeremy Carey said many people would find his inaction "repugnant''.

The judge told him: "You did not try in any way to help a drowning girl - not by throwing her a life buoy, not by going to her aid as some would have done, not by calling for help, not by contacting the rescue or emergency services.

"In other words, you left her to drown.''

Date time:261232 JAN 17