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A Jamaican man who plunged a knife into a fellow countryman’s neck - killing him during a midday attack in an internet café - has been told he’ll spend at least the next 21 years in jail.
Douane Brown stabbed Horace Williams at the Smethwick café on 16 April in what witnesses described as being like “scenes from a horror movie".
CCTV showed the pair exchanging glances at a money transfer counter in the café moments before Brown - originally from Kingston where it’s believed he knew his 36-year-old victim - pulled a folding knife from his jacket pocket.
Mr Williams staggered into the street clutching his neck, gesturing to passers-by for help, and leaving a trail of blood before collapsing on the pavement. He was pronounced dead at the scene at 1.20pm.
Brown walked calmly from the Cape Hill café after the attack but was arrested the next day by patrol officers who spotted him behind the wheel of a Ford Focus in Kenrick Way.
He told the armed cops “you don’t have to worry about me… I’m a peaceful person" but later refused to answer any questions in interview.
The 39-year-old claimed he’d had problems with Mr Williams and when their paths crossed he struck out in self-defence as he feared for his own safety.
However, a jury dismissed his claim and found him unanimously guilty of murder. He was jailed for life and told he will serve a minimum of 21 years behind bars.
Senior Investigating Officer Detective Inspector Justin Spanner, said: “It’s clear there was some history between the pair but the attack was seemingly spontaneous and not prompted by any aggression from Mr Williams.
“It was a shocking attack that will no doubt stay long in the memory of any witnesses; members of the public came to his aid and provided CPR but the injury was so severe there was nothing that could be done to save him.
“He managed to flee immediately after the attack but he was quickly in police custody after a police patrol spotted him driving a car linked to him.
“It was a timely arrest - because we later found out that just after the offence on the 16th he’d booked a flight to Jamaica and was planning to leave the country early on the Monday morning.
“I hope Mr Williams’ friends and family can take some comfort having seen justice done and the knowledge that Brown will spend much of his life locked up."