Man jailed for New Years’ Day manslaughter in Boston

Ricardas Mazeika
Ricardas Mazeika

A New Year’s Day party guest who admitted unlawfully killing a Boston man was this morning (Wednesday) jailed for five years.

Ricardas Mazeika, 30, had denied the murder of Deimantas Strelciunas, 41, during the party at Mr Strelciunas’ home in St Ann’s Wharf, off London Road in Boston.

Court crest

Court crest

But on the second day of his trial at Lincoln Crown Court, Mazeika pleaded guilty to a charge of manslaughter.

The plea was accepted by the prosecution after they consulted with Mr Strelciunas’ widow and his family in Lithuania. Mr Strelciunas, a 28-stone man who stood over six feet four inches tall, was described to the jury as “a teddy bear” who was not aggressive.

Passing sentence Judge Michael Heath told Mazeika that although a number of people including Mr Strelciunas’ widow and son were in the house at the time of the attack nobody had seen it.

Judge Heath said: “There was heavy drinking not least by you and the deceased, and at about 6.45pm a loud bang was heard in the house.

“The deceased was found lying in the hallway at the bottom of the stairs with you on top of him.”

Judge Heath said it was accepted that there was a minimum of three blows used in the attack.

“The attack included punches to the face and a knee to the face when he was in a position of vulnerability,” Judge Heath added.

“Why it started is unclear, but it started on the spur of the moment I am satisfied.”

A victim impact statement was read out from Mr Strelciunas’ widow who was too upset to come in to court to watch the sentence. In it she said how her partner did not deserve to die in such a horrible way and described how the couple’s son was upset that his father was no longer at home.

Nic Lobbenberg QC, prosecuting, had told the jury how Mr Stelciunas suffered fatal injuries after he was attacked at least three times by Mazeika during an incident in the hallway of the property.

The jury was told that the two men shared three bottles of vodka between them in less than five hours of drinking before Mazeika became upset when his partner danced with Mr Strelciunas but that disagreement appeared to have settled down.

Paul Mann QC, representing Mazeika, told the jury he accepted there was a confrontation on the staircase which led to him assaulting the deceased and the two of them falling down the stairs.

Mr Mann said on any view it was a short fight with no weapon or shod foot used.

“He at no stage intended to cause the deceased’s death or serious injury,” Mr Mann added.

Mr Mann told the court Mazeika’s own partner and son had left him and he faced deportation back to Lithuania once he is released from prison.

Ricardas Mazeika,30, of Laughton Road, Boston, denied the murder of Deimantas Strelciunas on 1 January this year.