Accused helped in beating death of Kelowna dad because of his link to Hells Angels, prosecutor argues

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Accused helped in beating death of Kelowna dad because of his link to Hells Angels, prosecutor argues


Roberts Cocks, front, leaves a sentencing hearing for his son Norman Cocks in February. — PNG files

Photograph by: Jenelle Schneider , PNG


One of four accused Hells Angels associates charged with manslaughter in the death of Kelowna dad Dain Phillips was motivated to participate in the attack in part because of his gang connections, a prosecutor has argued.

In final submissions, Crown counsel Joe Bellows said the anger of accused Robert Cocks, a member of the Hells Angels support club the Throttle Lockers and the father of Hells Angel Norman Cocks, towards Phillips prior to the June 2011 attack was “amply demonstrated.”

He said that Norman Cocks told his dad about an incident in which the younger man was chased backwards in a truck driven by Phillips in Rutland, on the day of the fatal assault.

“It is submitted that as a father Robert Cocks was motivated to participate in the attack on Dain Phillips,” said Bellows in his written submissions.

“It is submitted that Robert Cocks was motivated to participate in the attack on Dain Phillips not only as a father protecting his son but as a Throttle Locker supporting a Hells Angel who was also his son.”

Bellows said the house where Robert Cocks lived with his son and Hells Angel Robert Thomas was a virtual shrine to the Hells Angels motorcycle club, with nearly every room replete with gang paraphernalia, including dozens of death head logo decals, framed and unframed posters and a prevalanece of replicas of skulls.

Norman Cocks and Thomas earlier pleaded guilty to manslaughter in Phillips’ death and were sentenced to 15 years in prison. They used a baseball bat and hammer to beat him to death.

Bellows said it was “inconceivable” that as Robert Cocks drove to the scene of the slaying with his son he did not know the two men had brought the weapons with them.

The accused must also have known Robert Cocks and Thomas would leap from the vehicle and immediately attack Phillips, who was acting as a peacemaker in a petty dispute between his sons Kody and Kaylin and two of the other accused, brothers Daniel and Matthew McRae, said Bellows.

Daniel McRae testified that he and his brother only wanted to get into a fist fight with the Phillips sons, but Bellows said that by virtue of the fact that Norman Cocks and Robert Thomas armed themselves, Robert Cocks was aware of their intent.

“It is submitted that Cocks knew full well that his friend and son intended to administer an extremely violent beating to the Phillips’ which would result in significant physical injury.”

There was evidence that Daniel McRae, Matthew McRae and accused Anson Schell armed themselves before they left for the scene of the slaying and that at least Matthew McRae took his weapon with him when he left the vehicle, said Bellows.

“Daniel McRae knew that there was great potential for violence on the part of Norman Cocks and Robert Thomas. He knew that both were full patch Hells Angels and had seen for himself an example of unprovoked violence on the part of Norman Cocks towards Kaylin Phillips mere hours before.

“Even if the Phillips were prepared to fight it could never to said that they were consenting to fight such a large group of men, with members of the group armed and two of whom were Hells Angels.”

The Crown has argued that the four co-accused, who have pleaded not guilty, kicked Phillips while he was lying on the ground.

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