One punch can kill

At the time of writing, the Festive Season is very much upon us. With all the joy that it brings, also comes more revelry and, sadly, the darker side of more alcohol-related violence. It was with this in mind that Dorset Police recently asked me to get involved in a campaign they are running on the devastation that can be wrought by as little as one punch.

It is still painful to recount the events of March 2016, when the life of my younger brother David was ripped away in an instant, as he was killed by precisely that attack. With one moment of a man losing all self-control, one instant of lashing out with full angry force, David’s life was ended. As a part-time amateur boxer that man would have known the power he could wield. He seemed not to respect any training he would have had about self-discipline and keeping his fighting to the ring, with gloves and a soft canvas for protection.

David’s killer will probably be released from prison soon, after serving two years of his four-year sentence. Whilst he had a record of previous assaults, I have since learnt of numerous examples of one-punch fatalities where someone has acted completely out of character, in the heat of the moment. Suddenly they have become a killer and someone has gone forever. Remarkably, Dorset Police recorded four of these tragedies in just one year, in their area alone. Hence we see their simple message to encourage those embroiled in escalating arguments to pause, take a moment and walk away.

I am very grateful that Trends in Urology and Men’s Health has helped me to promote the message of this crucial issue, which of course involves men almost exclusively, and which I am sure merits national coverage. Have no doubt: One Punch Can Kill.


Comments (8) Add yours ↓
  1. Roger Kirby Professor of Urology

    What a tragedy! Our sympathy goes out to Johnny and his family. I think the one punch can kill campaign is an excellent idea and one that we are happy to promote though Trends. Do add your comments to this blog. Alcohol fuelled violence is a scourge to our society and anything that can be done to reduce it has to be applauded.

    December 9, 2017 Reply
  2. Roland Morley Consultant Urologist

    A very heartfelt tragedy! We now need to get this on mainstream television during the festive season to gain maximum impact!

    December 9, 2017 Reply
  3. Dominic Hodgson Urologist

    Needless, sickening and tragic. My heart goes out to your family, and I wish you all the best for the campaign Jonny. I hope that the video is being pushed in schools.

    December 9, 2017 Reply
  4. Dominic Hodgson Urologist

    Needless, sickening and tragic. My heart goes out to your family, and I wish you all the best for the campaign Jonny. I hope that the video is being pushed in schools.

    December 9, 2017 Reply
  5. Culley Carson Prof of urology

    Wow, what an awful story but a lesson to all. in the US, trained boxers are treated differently from others that assault and are usually charged with assault with a dangerous weapon with intent to kill which is far more serious than a punch. This is a tragic example of the dangers of a trained pugilist mixed with alcohol and testosterone. Great that you can make some impact on the campaign Jonny!

    December 9, 2017 Reply
  6. Roger Kirby Professor of Urology

    Of course a single punch can kill a woman as well as a man. More than two thirds of women murdered by a man last year were killed by a partner or former partner. A total of 113 women were killed by men in England, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2016 – and 90 per cent of these victims were murdered by someone they knew, according to the latest Femicide Census report.

    Seventy-eight of the women were murdered by their current or former intimate partner, with three quarters (77 per cent) of those killed by their ex-partner or ex-spouse taking place within the first year that followed the separation. Three quarters (75 per cent) of all femicides took place in the woman’s own home. The figures, which constitute the most up-to-date information on femicide in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, serve as a stark reminder of the devastating effects of domestic violence, as well as fatal attacks on women by men they don’t know.

    The annual Femicide Census, which collates the details of femicides committed by men to explore where lessons can be learnt by viewing cases together, also shows that one in six women were killed by either a stranger or someone they knew who wasn’t an intimate partner or family member. In more than a third of cases, perpetrators used a sharp instrument to kill the victim.

    December 10, 2017 Reply
  7. Simon Chowdhury Consultant Oncologist

    Dear Jonny, my thoughts are with you and your family. Well done on doing something positive from this awful situation. We will do our best to support this and honour David’s memory.

    December 10, 2017 Reply
  8. Mike Kirby Professor

    Echo all the supportive comments above Jonny, it must be a huge gap in your lives, especially at this time of year
    I have sent it to as many people as I can.
    Hopefully a campaine like can really make a difference
    It needs to get into a National paper or two
    Our thoughts are with you all

    December 13, 2017 Reply

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