“WE WILL never again see that cheeky smile.” Those were the words of a grieving mother as the two men who murdered her son were jailed for life.

Members of Courtney Jones’ family sat in the court while the brothers were sentenced yesterday morning.

It comes after Sidney, 26 and of no fixed abode, and Charlie, 19, of Ashby Road, Totton, were found guilty at Winchester Crown Court by a majority verdict last week. The court heard the pair carried out a “frenzied” attack on Mr Jones in Salisbury Road, Totton, before Sidney stabbed the 26-year-old dad-to-be in the side with a kitchen knife “at least twice”.

During yesterday’s hearing, prosecutor Adam Feest QC read out statements from Mr Jones’ mother Zoe Pope and partner Hannah Cove. Ms Cove said: “I felt like I had been hit by a bus.

“I was 24 weeks pregnant... He had already proven he was a brilliant dad to my son.

“Birthdays and Christmases will never be the same again. Justice cannot replace what you have taken from me and my children.”

His mother added: “He looked forward to building a better future with his young family. Courtney had grown into a loving, caring man.”

Describing the attack as a “senseless and tragic murder”, she said: “There aren’t enough words to convey the utter devastation this has caused us all.”

Mr Feest asked the judge, Mr Justice Choudhury, to consider a minimum prison term of 30 years as, he argued, the murder was in the course of a robbery of a bag containing drugs and during the trial said it was Charlie who brought the knife.

However, Sidney’s barrister James Newton-Price QC said: “It did, in my submission, remain a feature of this case that whether this started as a robbery and who took the knife to the scene were both areas subject to a degree of uncertainty.

“It is more likely that it was Mr Jones, bearing in mind past history, who took the knife to the scene.”

Charlie’s barrister Matthew Jewell QC added Charlie was never seen with a knife at the scene.

As previously reported, Mr Jones commonly known as Timmy and of Deerlands Avenue, Sheffield, had been visiting his friend Bethany Fee at the address in Salisbury Road on August 25, while the Cooper brothers were in another nearby home.

Sometime after 7pm the pair had been trying to get into Ms Fee’s home, but when Mr Jones came out to confront them, he was attacked.

The court heard during the three-week trial Mr Jones was kicked, punched, had his head stamped on and was hit over the head with a brick.

Charlie was also alleged to have said to Mr Jones while he was bleeding to death on the driveway: “I told you not to **** around with us,” which Charlie denied when giving evidence.

Sentencing the pair to life behind bars, of which Sidney will serve a minimum of 18 years and Charlie 15 years behind bars, Judge Justice Choudhury said: “As [Mr Jones] stepped out, both of you launched a vicious attack. [Witness Stephen Lucas] said you had descended on him like a pack of wolves.

“The injuries caused were catastrophic.”

However, he added: “It is quite possible Timmy emerged from the house with a knife.

“The motive for the attack remains unclear.”

He said the statements given to police claiming the attack was self-defence “contained a pack of lies”, adding: “It’s quite clear to me you were both the aggressors.

“Even if Timmy had the knife initially, it is clear beyond doubt that by the time you got it, Sidney, he was on his knees.”

Addressing the impact of Mr Jones’ murder, Judge Justice Choudhury said: “He was about to become a father when he died; his young son will never see him.

“Whilst Timmy had a chequered background, his death will leave a large hole.

“Your criminal activities have undoubtedly ruined my lives.”