THE grieving family of a man who was brutally stabbed to death seven months ago feel like they can ‘finally breathe again’ now that his killers are behind bars.

Last week both Daniel Cheetham, 26, and Liam Shaw, 25, were found guilty and sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court for their role in the death of Carl Dixon.

Cheetham received a life sentence with a minimum of 18 years for murder, while Shaw will spend 11 years behind bars for manslaughter.

“I’m just glad it’s finally done,” Carl’s sister Claire told the Chronicle.

“This week’s been horrible, I’ve been so emotional in court and couldn’t stop crying.

“We all thought they’d get longer but the main thing I wanted to hear was that they were found guilty.

“Now we can try and move on as best we can.”

On September 5, Carl was murdered outside a friend’s house in George Street, Worsbrough, after an argument over a box of tablets quickly escalated to brutal violence.

Witnesses claim both Cheetham and Shaw took turns attacking Carl while he lay slumped across the stairs bleeding, with Cheetham grabbing a pair of garden shears to attack his victim.

Police and paramedics were called to the scene but the severity of the injuries which included stab wounds to his heart and lung meant he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Claire admits that Carl was ‘no angel’ but nevertheless says he had a kind heart despite a serious head injury some years back that caused mood swings.

“He cracked his skull and had a bleed on the brain,” she added.

“Everyone who knew him knew that it had happened Daniel and Liam would’ve known and still treated him how they did.

“He tried to get help from social services but it never happened he should’ve had something he could show people explaining he had a bleed on his brain and didn’t always say what he meant.

“I guess you just don’t think about these things until it’s too late.”

A week after his death, the family began fundraising to cover funeral costs with the hope of giving him the send-off he deserved, and released balloons at a special event where family and friends could meet, reminisce and share stories of his life.

“I was devastated when it happened, I’m still devastated,” Claire added.

“This feels like a weight’s been lifted from my shoulders and I can finally breathe again.

“Knowing they’re in prison has helped me get more closure it’s done with now and isn’t hanging over us all.

“We scattered his ashes on Wednesday, so I think I can move on now and Carl can move on too.”

The ashes were scattered at Worsbrough Reservoir, where Carl and Claire spent plenty of time together.

Now she has put a memorial there that the family can visit and remember him.

“I wanted to get a memorial bench there, we always used to go around with a few cans and have a laugh.

“Unfortunately they told us they don’t do memorial benches anymore Coun Jake Lodge helped us out and said that while they don’t do benches they can do a memorial tree for us.

“We got one planted on Wednesday, I still go round there with my kids so they can see it and remember him.

“I think he’d love it.”

Claire is in the process of getting a plaque made for the tree that will commemorate Carl’s life.

The past seven months have been heartbreaking for the entire family, with Carl’s other sister Kerry adding: “I’m devastated that all this has happened he should still be with us all. I miss him so much.”

Yet it was particularly difficult for Claire’s twin children, as she noted that at first they would cry regularly and say they miss their uncle.

“During the first weeks of the trial they were still in school,” she added.

“We all struggled I would get calls from their school telling me they’d been crying in class.

“I think we’re now just trying to get back to normal.”