A 21-YEAR-OLD man who admitted murdering his former friend in the street has been jailed for life, with a minimum term of 18-and-a-half years.

James Murphy, of Westerdale Road, Berwick Hills, Middlesbrough pleaded guilty to stabbing lifelong friend Lucas Bishop, 20, in the neck.

Newcastle Crown Court heard Mr Bishop was found on Ellerby Green, Berwick Hills, by Murphy's mother shortly after 7.30am on Sunday, September 8 last year.

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Andrew Robertson QC, prosecuting, said that Mr Bishop had been stabbed in the neck shortly before 6.45am. His jugular vein had been cut.

He was also stabbed six times in the back.

Mr Robertson said: "One matter that disturbed the family was that Lucas was left in the street for some time."

The emergency services were not called until after 7.30am.