This is the face of killer Christopher Graham from Washington found guilty of murder of Jarrow man Simon Bowman

A brutal killer who left a grandfather's fingers and toes "scattered" on the floor next to his mutilated body will be jailed for life.

Wednesday, 18th December 2019, 6:12 pm

Simon Bowman suffered a shocking catalogue of 100 sites of injury, including 30 to his head and neck, caused by more than one weapon.

The 54-year-old's fingers and toes may have been removed with bolt cutters, both before and after he died, he had deep stab wounds and his throat had been cut.

Christopher Graham, of Washington, admitted killing his victim during a trial at Newcastle Crown Court but claimed he acted in self defence.

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Christopher Graham brutally murdered his closest friend, Simon Bowman

The 30-year-old told jurors he had picked up a "heavy object" to protect himself at a time when he thought Mr Bowman, who he was staying with, was about to rape or kill him but said he remembered nothing about the killing itself.

Graham has now been found guilty of murder after less than an hour deliberation by a jury.

He will be sentenced in January and has been remanded in custody.

Judge Paul Sloan QC warned him: "There is only one sentence that can be imposed in respect of an offence of murder and that is a sentence of life imprisonment.

Christopher Graham is facing life in prison.

"I am required, as a matter of law, to specify the minimum term you must serve before you can even be considered for release.

"That I will decide when you come back before me for sentence next year."

Prosecutor Richard Wright QC told the court Mr Bowman's body was discovered in May, after housing officers were asked to check on his welfare and sensed a "smell of death".

Mr Wright said: "On one of the settees in the lounge, lying on his back with his face stoved in and his blood projected up the wall behind him was Simon Bowman. He was plainly dead, as paramedics who attended confirmed.

Police and forensic officers at the scene in High Street, Jarrow

"Simon Bowman had been subjected to a sustained and savage attack that was as violent as it was disturbing.

"Not only did he have massive damage to the structures of his face and to his skull, his ribs were also extensively fractured.

"These blunt force injuries have undoubtedly been caused by a series of very heavy impacts with a weapon of some sort.

"The damage to his head and to his brain was massive and unsurvivable. He would have died from those injuries rapidly but the attack upon him had started earlier a day had continued even after he was dead or dying.

Simon Bowman

"He had also been attacked with a knife, having deep wounds to his neck and to his arms.

"Something sharp had also been used to mutilate his body. His fingers and toes had been cut off and were scattered about him on the floor next to the settee.

"Some had been removed when he was already dead but some had been removed when he was still alive.

"On any view he had been the victim of a savage, sustained and deliberate attack in which significant force had been deployed by his attacker and in which a variety of weapons had been used upon him to cause a range of injuries."

The court heard Mr Bowman had spent a large part of his adult life in prison and witnesses in the case described him as a "dangerous bully" who carried weapons.