A man is accused of murdering his ex’s new lover after witnessing the pair engaging in a sexual encounter at a children's playground.
A jury heard that Kyle Morley is accused of attacking both, initially punching his ex-girlfriend Katie Lamb hard in the face. Morley is said to have then turned on David Bettison – while the lover still had his pants around his ankles.
Morley punched him and then kicked and stamped on him, causing such serious damage to his face that he could no longer breathe, the court heard. Mr Bettison was sadly pronounced dead at the Hugglescote, Leicestershire park, on February 24.
But appearing at Leicester Crown Court, Morely pleaded not guilty to the murder and attempted murder. The 29-year-old, of St Bernards Road, Whitwick, near Coalville, however, did admit to attacking both 23-year-old Miss Lamb and 43-year-old Mr Bettison.
Morley gave detectives a prepared statement after his arrest in which he said he accepted assaulting Mr Bettison but denied intending to cause him serious injury. He added in his statement that he was "heavily intoxicated" and had been taking class-A drugs, as reported by Leicester Mercury.
Today, the first day of the trial at Leicester Crown Court, prosecutor Michael Brady KC told the jury the drink and drugs were no excuse and that Morley was guilty as charged of murdering Mr Bettison. He said that the defence of loss of control – which could result in a manslaughter verdict, rather than murder – was no defence in Morley's case.
Mr Brady said: "Kyle Morley, we say, did it in a fit of anger sparked by sexual jealousy. The only inference to draw, such was the savagery of the attack, is that the defendant intended to kill Mr Bettison. He also attacked Katie Lamb so that when the police arrived she was incoherent. Katie Lamb has limited recollection of the events in the park."
The jury heard Morley had been drinking with Mr Bettison and others at Hugglescote pubs in the hours before the alleged murder, while Miss Lamb had arrived at about midnight. At one stage, Miss Lamb and Mr Bettison were seen heading into the playground hand-in-hand.
Then about five minutes later Morley appears on the footage walking into the park but the attack itself was not captured on CCTV.
Mr Brady told the jury: "The defendant ran to them and punched her with sufficient force she was rendered unconscious. She remembers being on the ground, watching the defendant punching David Bettison, who was also on the ground.
"Mr Bettison was not fighting back and his face was covered in his blood. She heard David Bettison making 'rattling noises' which, from her experience working in an old folks' home, made her think that he was going to die."
Residents who were awoken by Miss Lamb’s screams called the police. Officers arrived at about 2.15 am on February 24. Morley initially told officers he had just caught Mr Bettison trying to rape his ex-girlfriend so he attacked him.
The jury heard that the police officers were unable to give Mr Bettison First Aid because the damage to his face was so severe. The post-mortem examination found his head, body and back had been stamped on, although the official cause of death was 'blunt force trauma to the face'.
The jury heard that Morley and Miss Lamb had been together for about two-and-a-half years but the relationship had ended in December last year. The relationship had been 'toxic' and 'volatile', Miss Lamb's mother told police in her statement to the detectives.
The trial continues.
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