Connor Brown murder trial: Accused ‘recognises he is guilty of manslaughter’ after teenager's death

A man accused of murdering Sunderland teenager has ‘recognised’ Connor Brown’s death makes him ‘guilty of manslaughter’, when asked by his defence solicitor in court.

Monday, 2nd December 2019, 5:16 pm
Updated Monday, 2nd December 2019, 5:19 pm
Connor Brown (inset) died in Sunderland city centre after he was stabbed on a night out.

Following a week-long break, Leighton Barrass took to the witness stand to begin giving evidence as the defence start their case.

Barrass confirmed to jurors when asked by defence solicitor Jonathon Whitfield QC that he was carrying a flick knife and confirmed he ‘realises it was unlawful to do that’.

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Mr Whitfield QC said: “Not only was it unlawful, it put other people at risk of injury didn’t it?”

Barrass replied ‘yes’.

“Connor Brown was injured and did die. You recognise that makes you guilty of manslaughter don’t you?” said Mr Whitfield QC.

Barrass again replied ‘yes’.

He told the court that he “did not want to hurt anybody” and he “did not intend to kill him or cause him really serious injury’.

Barrass told the court that he had the flick knife with him because he intent to go fishing in South Shields with a friend but when they arrived his friend said he didn’t want to fish anymore so they instead went to a pub, The Grey Hen.

He then forgot the knife was in his jacket pocket when he headed out for the evening.

The 20-year-old was then shown CCTV of him taking out the knife from the waistband of his trousers. Barrass said kept the knife in his waistband because he didn’t want to be taking it out in his hand with his money when he went to the bar to buy a pint.

When asked by his solicitor why he got the knife out Barrass said: “I was just being stupid, having a laugh with my friend.”

He admitted in court that he had been “quite drunk” on the night that Connor was killed.

The trial continues.