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Family plea as drunk killer jailed
Shane Cate and Dee Cate, the brother and mother of murdered man Paul outside the Supreme Court. Picture: Simon Santi/The West Australian

The man who killed the father of teenage murder victim Jessie Cate has been jailed for more than six years with the grieving family calling for a halt in violent, drunken crime in WA.

Timothy Skipper, 42, had been drinking with Paul Cate at a Dawesville caravan park when he became embroiled in an argument and punched him twice, causing him to fall and lose consciousness.

He punched and kneed Mr Cate while he was on the ground.

The fatal attack on Mr Cate on May 31, 2012 came a day after 20-year-old Kyle Rohan Garth admitted murdering Mr Cate's 15-year-old daughter Jessie, whose body was found in a roadside grave six months earlier.

The Supreme Court heard Skipper claimed he thought 46-year-old Mr Cate was just snoring and sleeping as he continued drinking with a mate nearby.

When he noticed his victim stop breathing he tried resuscitating him but then lied to ambulance officers about what had caused him to be on the ground.

But Justice Lindy Jenkins today said the fact was that Skipper was responsible for the death, even if he didn't plan to threaten his life, and that, regrettably, offenders were continuing to unleash such assaults despite so many ending up in tragedy.

"I have seem over decades too many people losing their lives from thoughtless violence even though there has been no intent to cause significant injury," the judge said today reflecting on her "30 odd years" in the criminal courts. "It doesn't take much to kill someone on some occasions."

"The simple fact is if you had not been drinking, if you had not let your temper go, then Mr Cate would be alive today. You must take responsibility for that," Justice Jenkins said.

Jessie Cate, murdered six months earlier.

Her comments came as a prosecutor said there was an "increased prevalence in the community of drunken violent assaults".

Outside court Mr Cate's mother Dee Cate and brother Shane Cate called for an end to alcohol-fuelled crime, saying alcohol abuse was coming at a great cost to the community.

They said their son and sibling had diminished contact with his daughter Jesse before the double tragedy struck the family.

"Obviously our family has been through an awful lot the last two years," Shane Cate said as he supported his mother Dee. "I don't think any parent could ever recover from losing their child."

"I think it was very difficult for Paul when he lost Jessie because of not being able to have contact and the support that he probably needed, so it was a very trying time for him."

The caravan in which Timothy Skipper lived.

"Again it comes down to alcohol abuse and alcohol violence... it takes away from people so much," he said about the type of crime that had taken his brother.

Skipper was jailed for six years and two months and made eligible for parole, which means he can apply for release after serving four years and two months.

The judge took into account Skipper's plea of guilty and attempts to resuscitate his victim.