Face of Derbyshire teenage killer jailed after death of much-loved schoolboy

A teenage boy has been jailed for 12 years for killing ‘much-loved’ 17-year-old Benjamin Orton in Derbyshire.

Friday, 14th January 2022, 6:52 pm

Erik Rudaks, of Essex Drive, Church Gresley, was found guilty in December of manslaughter following a three-week trial at Derby Crown Court and was today sentenced for killing Benjamin.

Benjamin, who was known as Benji to his friends and loved ones, and his 20-year-old friend were attacked on Wragg Passage, near to the Odeon cinema in Swadlncote, South Derbyshire, in the late evening of Saturday, June 12 last year.

Sadly, despite attempts to save him, Benjamin died at the scene, having suffered 13 stab wounds - two which punctured his heart and right lung.

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Erik Rudaks has been jailed for the manslaughter of Benjamin Orton in Derbyshire.

His friend was also stabbed five times in the head and neck and survived, but suffered serious injuries.

The 17-year-old, who was 16 at the time of the offence, pleaded not guilty to killing Benjamin.

He was cleared of murder, attempted murder and causing grievous bodily harm with intent but had previously admitted a charge of possessing a knife.

Two other teenagers, also aged 17, were cleared of all charges during the trial, including murder, manslaughter, attempted murder and grievous bodily harm with intent.

One of the 17-year-olds was also found not guilty of assisting an offender.

At the hearing the judge lifted reporting restrictions around identifying Rudaks following a request by the local media.

It had previously been protected by law due to his age.

Amanda Orton-Taylor, Benjamin’s mother, said: “Our family will never be the same again, losing Ben has left a huge void in our lives that can never be filled, it’s like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle which will always be missing.

“Nothing at all can bring Ben back to us at all. I just hope that other youngsters will realise how dangerous knives can be, so that we can stop other people having to go through the same.”

Detective Inspector Steve Shaw, who led the investigation into Benjamin’s death said: “What happened that evening resulted in some truly devastating consequences and Ben Orton tragically lost his life.

"He was much loved by his family and he can never be replaced.

"They continue to have my deepest sympathies for their loss.”