A MAN has pleaded guilty to manslaughter more than five years after punching a partygoer in the head when he was 16 years old.

Landon Smith, now 22, admitted unlawfully killing Craig Kaye at a hearing at Bradford Crown Court yesterday.

Smith, of Hillam Street, Great Horton, Bradford, was charged with manslaughter after Mr Kaye, who was left with severe brain damage, died aged 43 in September, 2017.

He was punched once to the side of his face by Smith in the early hours of September 1, 2014.

Mr Kaye, of Great Horton Road, Bradford, was walking home from a party when he was assaulted in Hollybank Road, Great Horton.

He was treated in Leeds General Infirmary where he remained for several months before being moved to a rehabilitation care centre.

In June, 2015, Smith told a jury at Bradford Crown Court he did not mean to injure Mr Kaye when he punched him once in the face.

He was cleared of causing Mr Kaye grievous bodily harm with intent and sentenced to a two-year youth rehabilitation order with an activity requirement and a three-month curfew order for the admitted offence of unlawful wounding.

Smith was then a 17-year-old student who could not be named because he was a juvenile.

His father, Warren Smith, then 46, of Hillam Street, and Andrew Sibson, then 39, of Northdale Mount, Wibsey, were cleared by the jury of intending to cause Mr Kaye grievous bodily harm and of unlawful wounding. Sibson was convicted of perverting the course of justice and Warren Smith had already admitted that offence.

Warren Smith was jailed for 18 months and Sibson was sentenced to 15 months imprisonment suspended for two years.

All three were sentenced at Leeds Crown Court on June 29, 2015.

Prosecutor Graham Reeds QC, told the hearing that Mr Kaye’s mother Jean had sat with her son every day for six months in Leeds General Infirmary. She died in March 2018.

Landon Smith originally denied the manslaughter allegation and a trial date was set for June 8.

After he changed his plea to guilty, the case was adjourned until July 10 for probation and psychiatric reports.

Smith appeared before the court via Skype. The lawyers and the police officers involved in the case were also linked remotely to the hearing in front of the Recorder of Bradford, Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC.

Describing it as a difficult and complicated case, the judge said: “This is a matter that must be handled very sensitively, it is not straightforward.”

The court heard that updated probation and psychiatric reports were needed before Smith could be sentenced. He also wanted to provide the court with references and a letter. Judge Durham Hall said the case would probably be heard at Leeds Crown Court.

He told Smith, who is on bail, he was giving no indication of sentence.