EX-footballer Joey Barton has been slammed for reducing the racist murder of an innocent 18-year-old by his brother and cousin to a “scrap”.
Michael Barton was 17 when he was jailed for life alongside his cousin Paul Taylor for the 2005 murder of Anthony Walker.
Joey Barton has been slammed for reducing the racist murder of an innocent 18-year-old by his brother and cousin to a ‘scrap’Credit: Alamy
Anthony Walker was just 18 when he was killed by Michael Barton and Paul TaylorCredit: Collect
Michael Barton was 17 when he was jailed for lifeCredit: check copyright
In a promotional clip for a podcast, Barton blamed Taylor for the July 29 killing in Merseyside.
He said Michael – moved to an open prison last year – “lost 17 years of his life” thanks to his cousin’s actions.
The 41-year-old added: “His mate, who was his cousin at the time, thought it would be a fantastic idea, when they were having a f*****g scrap, to pull an ice axe out and swing it into somebody and it stuck in his head.”
The Anthony Walker Foundation, founded by his mum Gee Walker, said Barton’s comments were “factually incorrect”.
They were “lacking in any sensitivity given the serious nature of the incident, in which Anthony Walker tragically lost his life to a violent racially motivated attack”, the foundation said.
The night he was killed, Anthony had been babysitting his nephew with girlfriend Louise Thompson and cousin Marcus Binns.
At around 11pm they left for the bus stop where they encountered Michael Barton who threatened to stab both men.
As the trio walked to another stop, Barton and Taylor, 20, followed in a car before ambushing them near McGoldrick Park, Huyton.
During the attack, Taylor buried an ice axe in Anthony’s skull – he died the following morning.
The pair fled to Amsterdam while Joey Barton demanded they return to face justice.
At their trial, Michael Barton had denied killing Anthony but was found guilty of murder, Taylor admitted his part in the killing.
Barton was today accused of attempting a “casual re-frame” of the racist murder “to plug a podcast”.
Another said: “His brother didn’t ‘lose’ 17 years.
“He was convicted of an unprovoked, pre-planned racially-aggravated murder after stalking an 18-year-old and killing him simply because he was black.
“He then fled to Amsterdam to try and avoid being caught.”
Kaushik Mistry, CEO of The Anthony Walker Foundation, said: “It is worth noting that Michael Barton did not lose 17 years of his life.
“The only life lost that day was Anthony’s and not for 17 years, but forever.”
Barton, who played for teams including Manchester City, Newcastle, QPR and Rangers in a 15-year career, has not apologised for his comments.
Paul Taylor was jailed for life for the 2005 murder of Anthony WalkerCredit: PA:Press Association
He lodged an ice axe into Anthony Walker’s head which killed himCredit: check copyright