Page last updated at 18:17 GMT, Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Store killing 'mistaken identity'

Kevin Tripp
Kevin Tripp was punched in a Sainsbury's supermarket in Merton

A shopper killed in a row over queue-jumping at a Sainsbury's supermarket was the victim of mistaken identity, Southwark Crown Court has heard.

Kevin Tripp, 57, who had a five-year-old daughter, suffered a fatal brain injury when he was punched to the ground in June last year.

Tony Virasami, 38, from Catford, admits manslaughter over the attack at the store in Merton, south-west London.

His partner Antonette Richardson, 37, denies the same charge.

'Almighty hit'

Jurors heard Ms Richardson, of Sedgehill Road, Catford, south-east London, was so incensed after being accused of pushing in she rang her boyfriend and summoned him to the store.

Antoinette Richardson
Antoinette Richardson denies manslaughter. Photo: Central News

But he targeted the wrong person by attacking Mr Tripp, from Colliers Wood, south-west London.

"He went over and gave the most almighty hit to that person, who fell over, banged his head hard and suffered a brain injury which caused him to die not very long afterwards," said Michael Worsley, QC, prosecuting.

The incident was caught on CCTV and Mr Worsley told the jurors: "It's rare in a case that you see a homicide occurring, but here you do."

He led the jury frame by frame through the CCTV images and said: "You can see that there was hate in the body language and that is quite clear."

Mr Worsley said Miss Richardson told police after arrest that she had "only wanted an apology off the boy".

The trial continues.

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