Grantham

Man jailed for manslaughter of Lincolnshire girl, 16

A man has been jailed for 12 years after being found guilty of the manslaughter of 16-year-old Lincolnshire girl Hannah Pearson.

James Morton, 24, formerly of Pierson Street, Newark was convicted by a jury at Nottingham Crown Court on Wednesday, July 19 and sentenced on Thursday, July 20.

He was found not guilty of murder.

Morton previously told the court that he and Hannah had began kissing after he got into bed with her and that she had allowed him to strangle her lightly, describing the pressure as ‘two or three out of ten, before increasing the pressure to around four or five’.

He said he became concerned when he could not hear her breathing.

He had told police that he had previously put his hands around girlfriends’ throats during sex.

Nottinghamshire Police received a call from Morton at 12.11am on July 24, 2016, stating that he had killed someone.

Officers rushed to the scene and began CPR on Hannah, who was unresponsive, while they waited for ambulance to arrive.

Despite the efforts of emergency services Hannah, from Marston near Grantham, was pronounced dead.

Speaking after Morton was convicted, Detective Inspector Justine Wilson, of Nottinghamshire Police, said: “This is a profoundly tragic case where a young girl has lost her life needlessly.

“I can’t pay tribute enough to Hannah’s family for their bravery, patience and dignity throughout this traumatic time.”

In a statement issued after Morton’s sentencing, Hannah’s family said: “We would like to thank the barrister Mr Evans, Nottinghamshire Police, the paramedics and the police who tried endlessly to save Hannah.

“We’d also like to thank family and friends and the wider community, all of whom have showed us care, compassion at this very sad time.

“When our daughter Hannah went out on that Saturday night, the last thing you would expect is a knock on the door from the police telling us that Hannah had been killed.

“At that moment our lives as a family changed forever. Gone was the laughter, the music in the house, the fun and joy she brought to our lives. 

“We are left with darkness, sadness and a loss from which we will never recover.

“Hannah’s loss is felt by many. The memories she created for others in her short life will live with those forever. She will be missed eternally but her legacy will live on.”