'Single punch' killed paratrooper

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The Independent Online

A man killed a young paratrooper during a night out with a single punch to the head, a court heard today.

Levy Chandler, 26, hit Private Rory McWilliams, from Second Battalion the Parachute Regiment, when he became involved in a fight with his friend, Northampton Crown Court heard.

Father-of-one Pte McWilliams died in hospital days after the incident, which happened around 2am on February 6, behind Domino's Pizza in St Peters Way car park in Northampton.

The court heard that Pte McWilliams, 20, sustained irreversible brain damage after his skull was fractured in the attack and doctors were unable to treat him.

He died in hospital on February 12, not long before he was due to go on a planned tour of Afghanistan.

Chandler, of Pomfret Court, River View in Northampton, has denied the manslaughter of Pte McWilliams.

At the start of his trial today prosecutor Alisdair Smith told the jury of seven women and five men that Chandler, who has received boxing training, dealt Pte McWilliams one blow to the left side of his face in an attack that he would not have seen coming.

Mr Smith said: "The defendant came over and struck Rory McWilliams one blow to the head.

"Rory McWilliams was knocked to the ground and hit his head on the ground as he fell.

"The injuries caused were such that within a week there was no prospect of his survival and he died."