Family of slain grandfather welcomes guilty plea
A YOUNG man faces the prospect of life in jail after pleading guilty to the senseless fatal attack of Ipswich grandfather Lindsay Ede.
Without provocation, Ariik Mayot, 20, punched the ageing stranger in the back of his head as he walked down a Goodna street in June last year.
Mr Ede, a Golden Gloves boxer, was hit with such force, he fell and hit his head on the concrete path. He was rushed to Princess Alexandra Hospital where he was placed in a coma. His family maintained a bedside vigil for several weeks but he never regained conciousness.
Following Mr Ede's death, Mayot became the first person in Queensland to be charged with Unlawful Striking Causing Death - an offence which carries a minimum jail term of 15 years.
Known as the "coward's punch law", it passed in Queensland Parliament in 2014 following a string of deaths involving a single blow.
Mayot's case was set to go to trial but he pleaded guilty in Brisbane Supreme Court on Friday. The Redbank Plains man will be sentenced on March 6.
Outside court, Mr Ede's daughter Kylie Beckett told reporters he was a "loving father and grandfather, always happy...would give you the shirt off his back if he could".
The guilty plea also came as welcome relief to Mr Ede's grieving brother and coward punch campaigner Terry Bishop who told the Queensland Times he was thankful his family had been spared the trauma of a trial.
"This is significant to my family because Mayot is now admitting that he has done this," Mr Bishop said.
"There was never any doubt in my mind, but for him to admit it after initially denying it is just a relief."
Come March, Mr Bishop and his family will front Brisbane Supreme Court for Mayot's sentence wearing shirts printed with the One Punch Kills message.
The shirts read: "Be smart, don't start" on the front and "Don't react, it's a fact" on the back.
For Mr Bishop, it's not the term of imprisonment that counts but the message it sends.
"It doesn't really matter to me how long of a jail term they give him, because it will never be enough," he said
"You cannot bring Lindsay back, so now our focus is going to be on celebrating his life."
The family will continue its annual memorial walk in honour of Mr Ede's life.
- ARM NEWSDESK