Camborne man jailed for manslaughter of his father
Steven Forster sentenced to 12 years in prison
A 40-year-old Camborne man has been jailed for 12 years for manslaughter after brutally attacking his elderly father in an act of frustration about his own life.
Steven Forster vented his anger by punching his 82-year-old father Barrie repeatedly around the face and head in an ‘outburst of violence’.
Mr Forster Senior sustained significant injuries during the attack at his Camborne home on 20 November 2020 and died in hospital a few days later.
Steven Forster, from Camborne, appeared before Truro Crown Court charged with murder.
However, the jury concluded that while the injuries inflicted during the assault were a direct cause of his father’s death, Steven Forster had not intended to cause him really serious harm.
He was therefore today [10 January] found not guilty of murder and convicted of manslaughter. He was sentenced to 12 years in prison to serve a minimum of two-thirds of the term.
The court heard that the victim was living in a flat in Gurney Mews at the time of the assault. He had a number of medical conditions but lived an active and independent life.
Steven Forster had been released from prison a few days before and his father allowed him to move in with him.
On the day of the assault the pair went into Camborne town centre. Steven Forster became difficult and aggressive with staff at a local bank after being unable to withdraw money due to a lack of identification or a bank card.
He took out his frustration by pulling down railings and banging on the bank window; this frustration would later spill into violence against his father.
Barrie Forster was not happy and told his son that he should change his behaviour or he would get into more trouble. When they returned to the flat, Steven Forster attacked his father as he sat in a chair in his bedroom.
It took Steven Forster at least 30 minutes to call an ambulance. When police and paramedics arrived, they found Mr Forster Sr badly beaten with substantial bruising to his face, head and neck. He had also sustained a broken nose, a fractured cheekbone, and a serious ear injury due to the impact of the assault.
His son admitted that he had struck his father repeatedly and was ‘just going nuts’ during the attack. He was arrested for assault occasioning grievous bodily harm.
Barrie Forster was taken to Treliske Hospital where he died six days later on 26 November. The court heard from prosecution medical experts that the assault was a significant cause of death as it triggered internal bleeding from an existing condition.
Steven Forster was further indicted for murder on 29 June 2021.
In police interview he said that had not intended to do his father really serious harm. However, the prosecuting counsel Simon Laws QC told the court: “This was a sustained and vicious attack on a defenceless, elderly man who was not in good health. It targeted his head and face and it caused him really serious injuries. Barrie Forster was struck again and again.
“Steven Forster was not defending himself, he was not mentally ill, or intoxicated so that he did not know what he was doing. He was simply frustrated with his own life and he took it out on his father in an outburst of violence.”
The jury concluded that Steven Forster had not intended to cause his father really serious harm, but evidence adduced by prosecution medical experts was accepted by the jury as proving the assault contributed significantly towards his death.
He was therefore deemed responsible for the death and was convicted of manslaughter.
Detective Inspector Rob Back, from the Major Crime Investigation Team, said: “I welcome today’s outcome.
“This was a brutal attack on Barrie Forster, a vulnerable 82-year-old man, by his own son and the very person he should have expected to feel safe around.
“I hope this result provides some measure of comfort for his family who have conducted themselves throughout the trial with dignity and restraint.
“This investigation incorporated complex medical evidence and I’d like to thank the jury for their diligence and professionalism in piecing this evidence provided together and showing strength in reaching their verdict.”
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