A JURY was shown police body cam footage in which murder defendant Michael Beach admitted to officers and a paramedic that he killed Scott Hopkins.

Beach, of Ruspidge Road, Cinderford claimed the death of Mr Hopkins in a flat last December was an accident.

Sentencing Beach to at least 16 years on Monday, Judge Julian Lambert said considerable force must have been used in the deliberate stabbing.

He told the 46-year-old: “"The highly distressing nature of this case is accentuated by the fact that we simply do not know why you did what you did. It may be you do not know either. What we do know is there was absolutely no need for it.

"I detected a good deal of spineless avoidance by you, both before the trial, and at trial.”

Detective Inspector Adam Stacey, from Gloucestershire Police’s Major Crime Investigation Team, said: “Beach's senseless actions on that night have torn apart so many lives. Our thoughts remain with Scott's family and friends at this incredibly difficult time.”

Following the sentencing, Scott's family released a statement, which said: "As a family we would like everyone to know Scott had a heart as big as him. At 6ft 1ins his character was as big and bold as he was.

"He will be eternally missed, forever loved and consistently remembered. Nothing will ever bring Scott back, but this result goes some small way to bringing peace to us all.

"We also want to say a huge thank you to everyone from the investigation who have helped us since the start.

"Every single person has worked so hard to support us and get us to this point. As a family this is the last thing we want to say, as the families on both sides of this case have young children who have to now move on with lives that have changed forever.”

During the trial, Sarah Jenkins, defending Beach said that her client had remained at the scene and had assisted in flagging down the ambulance following the call to the emergency services.

“Beach did not leave the scene. From the outset there has been an expression of remorse about what happened that night.”