Boy, 14, and accomplice 'kicked man to death after he found them burgling a house'

Eric Rider who was stamped to death in Plaistow

Victim: Eric Rider, 60, suffered devastating injuries to his face, head and brain

A 14-year-old boy confessed to killing an elderly man after being caught burgling a house yards away from the murder scene, the Old Bailey heard today.

The teenager kicked and stamped 60-year-old Eric Rider to death on a communal grassy area in Plaistow, east London.

He used such force that an imprint of his trainer was left on the victim's face, jurors were told.

The youth and his co-defendant Mantas Kraucevicius, 27, still had the victim's blood on their clothes when they broke into the home of a young family, the court heard.

But when the owner of the house and his lodger made a citizen's arrest and called the police, the teenager begged for mercy.

He pleaded: 'I will get on my knees. I want to apologise.

'Please let us go. I'm going to have double trouble. I killed someone down the road.'

The Old Bailey heard Mr Rider was last seen alive at 6am on June 27 this year sitting on a bench at the junction of Beaumont Road and Kent Street in Plaistow.

Prosecutor Peter Finnigan QC told the court: 'He had fallen on hard times and had recently been living apart from his partner of 24 years.

'He had a drink problem and the place where he met his death was known locally as an area where drinkers would congregate and socialise.

'At first people though there wasn't much out of the ordinary seeing the prone body of a man lying just off the pathway.

'But one member of the public, realising something was terribly wrong on seeing his bloodied face, called 999.'

Mr Rider had suffered 'devastating injuries' to his face, head and his brain and was pronounced dead on arrival at hospital.

Jurors heard there were no witnesses to the attack, but CCTV shows both the 14-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, and Kraucevicius leaving the area.

Mr Finnigan said: 'This was a vicious attack by much younger, fitter persons, fired up by drink, who having attacked Eric Rider left him for dead.

'Both of them apparently nonchalantly made their way from the scene only to carry on their lawless behaviour by bursting into somebody else's home.'

He told the court the motive behind the attack was probably related to a drunken argument.

The pair were arrested a few hundred yards away after breaking into the house.

A lodger, who shared the home with a husband and wife and their baby, woke up to find them on the stairs.

After a scuffle, he prevented them leaving the house and the police were called, the court heard.

The teenager claimed that they thought the house was owned by a cannabis dealer.

Mr Finnigan told the court: 'He begged the householders to let them go, pointing to his bloodied white tracksuit bottoms, saying they had just killed somebody down the road and would be in double trouble if arrested.'

Kraucevicius, of Plaistow, and the 14-year-old boy, from Victoria Dock, deny murder and burglary.

The trial continues.

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