Gambler admits killing man in Ladbrokes betting shop attack in Harlesden

14:26 27 April 2012

Donovan Calder has admitted killing Eric Mills in Harlesden

Donovan Calder has admitted killing Eric Mills in Harlesden

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Victim died almost two years after his head was repeatedly stamped on

A gambler has admitted killing a man in a betting shop by repeatedly stamping on his head in front of shocked customers.

Donovan Calder, 54, attacked Eric Mills in front of shocked customers in Ladbrokes in Harlesden High Street, Harlesden, in January 2008.

Mr Mills suffered internal bleeding from an area of bruising on the brain as a result of his injuries.

He was left bedbound in hospital and unable to speak more than two words before he died in December 2009.

Months after the attack, Calder, who lived in Crome Road, Willesden, at the time, was convicted of grievous bodily harm with intent and detained at a mental health unit.

Following Mr Mills death, the Attorney General approved a decision to charge Calder with murder.

He was due to stand trial at the Old bailey next week but today (Friday) he pleaded guilty to manslaughter due to diminished responsibility.

During Calder’s trial in 200, the court heard he lashed out when Mr Mills asked him for money he was owed.

Calder told police he had been attacked first and acted in self defence.

In a prepared statement, he said: “I Donovan Calder was at Ladbrokes in Harlesden High Street when a man I know as Eric assaulted me.

“I defended myself until I felt I was safe from death.2

However, CCTV in the betting shop captured Calder landing the first blow before Mr Mills crashed to the ground.

Calder then stamped on his head with such force that customers in the shop shouted: “Stop, do you want to kill him.”

He then continued to stamp on Mr Mills, who was lying defenceless on the ground.

Mr Mills suffered

Calder has been remanded in custody and will be sentenced on June 11 following the preparation of a pre-sentence report and a psychiatric report.

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