Guilty verdict in BlackBerry man murder trial


Ashley Charles sentenced to minimum of 14 years for the murder of BlackBerry employee Philip Sherriff

The man accused of murdering BlackBerry employee Philip Sherriff has been found guilty and sentenced to a minimum of 14 years in prison.

Ashley Charles, 26, slashed Sherriff (pictured) in the neck with a broken glass bottle after a row as he stood at the bar of Pulse nightclub in Southwark, London in April.

The event, which saw pop star Jessie J perform, had been hosted by BlackBerry on April 3 to celebrate its instant messaging service, BlackBerry Messenger (BBM).

Charles, a graphic designer of Nevanthon Road, Leicester, had denied murder but was given a life sentence and told he will serve a minimum of 14 years at the Old Bailey.

Sherriff was at the bar when there was jostling by Charles, who was trying to get a free beer. Prosecutors said Charles became irritated, grabbed a bottle from Sherriff’s hand and slashed his neck. Sherriff, from Preston, Lancashire, died four days later.

Sherriff’s widow, Jane, has set up a campaign called Bottle Stop, which aims to ban glass bottles from late night city centre pub and nightclubs.

The Bottle Stop Facebook page, which went live on August 17, has so far received almost 80,000 ‘likes’ from visitors.