Local man jailed for life over murder of Leeds second year

Richard Danter had a string of previous convictions

billy jacob mankelow dark arches get baked leeds murder richard danter viaduct

A violent sex offender has been jailed for life for the brutal murder of Leeds University second year Billy Mankelow.

31-year-old Richard Danter was jailed for a minimum of 15 years and five months after the “sustained and brutal” attack on the popular Get Baked employee.

The court heard Danter committed the horrific assault after the pair had gone to the Dark Arches in Leeds for a sexual encounter.

Mankelow had met Danter earlier in the night in the Viaduct bar, and the pair left together.

Once they were alone, Danter stamped and kicked Mankelow’s head over 20 times before heading back to the bar and informing staff that he had attacked someone.

Danter returned to the Dark Arches and dragged the severely injured body of Mankelow further inside the arch to prevent anyone from discovering him.

Danter then fled after being spotted by two members of the public who then rushed to Mankelow’s aid.

They found him half naked and bleeding heavily from his head but still breathing.

Emergency services were called but Mankelow passed away later that day.

The surgeon who oversaw Mankelow said he had “never before seen such trauma that was completely focused on the head and facial area.”

Police initially could not identify the body of Mankelow after Danter removed his mobile phone, passport, and other items in an attempt to hide the victim’s identity.

Danter later confessed to his boyfriend that he had hit Mankelow’s head against a wall before repeatedly stamping on it.

Danter had a string of previous convictions including the 1998 attempted rape of a teenager with learning difficulties for which he was sentenced to four years in prison.

More recently he had attacked a Leeds Metropolitan student in 2010 after meeting him in a pub and leading him to a secluded spot.

He was described by Viaduct staff as having a “quick temper” and a “promiscuous” lifestyle.

Danter, of Queens Road, Burley, pleaded guilty to murder.

The Recorder of Leeds, judge Peter Collier, QC, said: “You subjected him to an unspeakable degree of violence.”

“I do not accept that you did not know he was still alive. You abandoned him there under those Dark Arches. You went back, you bent down to move him.

“Others who found him subsequently had no difficulty in immediately realising that he was still alive.”

Mankelow studied Social Sciences at Leeds University and had deferred from his studies for a year after the death of his mother.

Mankelow was a popular employee at Get Baked on Woodhouse Lane and was described as “a kind-hearted and genuinely decent human being”.

The fast food restaurant shut its doors on April 27th as a mark of respect for the valued member of staff.

After the case Mankelow’s family released a statement: “Billy loved life and had lots of friends. He was independent and motivated and went to study at Leeds University. Billy loved Leeds, a place where he made a life for himself and had lots of friends.

“Billy’s family and friends are all distraught at the way Billy died; which was so senseless and unnecessary. Billy was simply out with friends having a good time with his life ahead of him.”

Det Chief Insp David Shipperlee, of the British Transport Police, said: “His death is such a tragic waste of a young life, a life taken by a violent, evil and dangerous man, who has a history of previous convictions for violence and sexual offences, who is now where he belongs – behind bars.”