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Life for man who pushed love rival down stairs.

Byline: Robin Turner Reporter robin.turner@walesonline.co.uk

A ROOFER who murdered his love rival by pushing him down a flight of stairs breaking his neck and back has been jailed for life.

Kevin Syms, 53, of Nicholls Avenue, Porthcawl, was told by sentencing judge Mr Justice Wyn Williams yesterday that what he did was a result of a "spontaneous eruption of violence".

He was jailed with a recommendation he serve a minimum 14 years before he can seek parole.

Swansea Crown Court heard Syms had been with his former girlfriend JoanneParkhouse-Thomas for a year last December when she spent the night drinking in Porthcawl with taxi driver Nicholas Tame, 46, of North Cornelly.

They got a taxi to her home but stopped to pick up Syms and when the three arrived at Parkhouse-Thomas' home they continued drinking.

In the early hours of Sunday, December 7, a tired Syms went upstairs to sleep in his girlfriend's bed, but later she and Mr Tame came up demanding he leave.

During the trial at which Syms denied murder, he agreed with Patrick Harrington QC, prosecuting, the implication was the two of them wanted him to leave the house so they could have sex.

Asked how he felt, Syms said: "A little bit grumpy I suppose, a bit sad that she wanted another bloke."

Parkhouse-Thomas, 42, of Monks Close, Pyle, was sentenced to 18 months in jail after admitting perverting the course of justice by giving a false account to police about what happened on the night Mr Tame died.

The judge said she had tried to minimise what happened and attempted to cover up the fact Mr Tame had been pushed down a full flight of stairs and that he had been hit over the head with a weapon while helpless. She had been charged jointly with Syms of murdering Mr Tame, but the charge was dropped the day before the trial began.

In a victim impact statement, Mr Tame's sister Samantha Lloyd said: "Nick was the youngest of four children and had a wonderful daughter. He was a lovely, placid man who would go out of his way to help anyone. December 7 last year was the darkest day of our lives... it's like a nightmare we can't wake up from.

"Our father collapsed at Nick's funeral. His daughter has to explain to her young daughter where bampy Nick has gone. It's heartbreaking."

Ms Lloyd said he was "a gentleman" and she said she had asked him to end his relationship with Parkhouse-Thomas but he replied: "I love her."

Peter Rouch, defending Syms, who he described as intellectually impaired, said: "If he had never met JoanneParkhouse-Thomas he would no doubt still be working and attending his mother's house every day and causing no problems, living his life the best he could."

Syms claimed during the trial that he was involved in "pushing and shoving" with Mr Tame at the top of a flight of stairs but on Tuesday a jury unanimously rejected his claim not to have pushed Mr Tame down the stairs leading to his fatal injuries. The judge told Syms: "What you did caused untold anguish to Mr Tame's family."

Speaking after the sentencing, Detective Chief Inspector Peter Doyle, from South Wales Police, said: "We hope the sentences can bring some solace to the family and friends of Nicholas.

"I have been asked by the family to express their satisfaction with the outcome of this investigation. Nicholas was a beloved member of the family and will be dearly missed."

CAPTION(S):

Nicholas Tame

Joanne Parkhouse-|Thomas

Kevin Syms has been jailed for a minimum of 14 years for the murder of Nicholas Tame
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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jul 17, 2015
Words:615
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