Old Bailey ruling due in Doherty party death case

By | Published on Monday 9 May 2011

Peter Doherty

The family of actor Mark Blanco will hear today at the Old Bailey if any incriminating evidence against Pete Doherty or two of his associates has been found in the investigation into the actor’s death at a party in 2006.

As previously reported, Blanco fell to his death from a balcony in the building where said party was taking place. Some eyewitnesses said Blanco had previously had a run in with Doherty and his minder Johnny Jeannevol, though the host of the party, Paul Roundhill, denied this. What is pretty certain, though, is that Roundhill twice forcefully evicted Blanco from his flat, the first time punching him several times in the process. It was shortly after Blanco’s second eviction that he fell to his death and shortly afterwards CCTV captured Doherty stepping over his body.

At the time, police investigations focused on the theory Blanco’s death was either suicide or an accident, perhaps as Blanco attempted to make his exit by jumping to a lamppost. But the coroner rejected the suicide theory, and, on declaring an open verdict, encouraged police to reopen their investigations. They announced plans to do so late last year, and Doherty was re-interviewed in February.

Blanco’s family have said that they will consider bringing a private prosecution against Doherty if police fail to bring charges. Their lawyer, Michael Wolking QC, told The Observer: “[The police originally] suffered an allergy to finding crime even though it is clear Mark was unlawfully killed. This week we will find out if they have overcome their shyness to prosecute”.

Mr Blanco’s mother, Sheila added that she would not go away and said the family had spend thousands of pounds investigating the death independently.