A man has been jailed for life with a minimum term of 14 years for killing Andrew Jackson in Shirebrook.
Leon Smith was found guilty of murder following a trial at Derby Crown Court and was today sentenced for killing Mr Jackson in 2020.
The body of Mr Jackson, who was 55-years-old, was discovered on Sunday 26 January at an allotment, off Prospect Drive, where he lived in a caravan.
During the trial, the jury heard how Mr Jackson suffered almost 40 separate injuries and was ultimately killed by a stab wound to his leg.
Detectives say 28-year-old Smith, an amphetamine and cocaine user, was high on drugs at the time and had told a witness that evening that he “intended to kill someone.”
Temporary Detective Chief Inspector Chris Marriott, who led the investigation said: “This was a complex inquiry, which lasted nearly two years and involved many teams and hundreds of investigators across Derbyshire and the wider East Midlands.
“The diligence and dedication displayed by all those involved in this investigation was second to none and my thanks go to everyone involved for their continued commitment.
“Smith had taken drugs that night but that is no excuse for his actions. He knew Mr Jackson was a vulnerable man who lived alone and he travelled from his friend’s house in Mansfield to Mr Jackson’s caravan and carried out a brutal and motiveless murder.
“CCTV showed us that Smith had been in the area that evening, carrying an air rifle, but he never admitted to being in the allotment that night.
“We later recovered the air rifle and expert analysis revealed that some unusual linear bruising on Mr Jackson’s body closely matched that of the rifle butt.”
T/DCI Marriott thanked people for their support during the investigation. He added: “My thanks go out to Mr Jackson’s family, the local community and our partners for their support and co-operation during the lengthy investigation.
“Mr Jackson was much-loved in the local community and many knew him as a friendly man who was always willing to help others. I hope his family and friends can now seek some comfort from the verdict.”
Sentencing Smith, Judge Shaun Smith QC said: “Clearly something happened outside that caravan which caused you to behave in the way that you did. Only you know what that was.
“It was not only about you, Mr Smith, but it was also about Mr Jackson. Everybody who spoke about him – even you – said what a nice man he was. As his brother said in his victim impact statement, although he had not seen him for a long time, he was a man who everybody liked. His death has affected his family but I know your sentence will affect yours. It’s such a waste of two lives.”