Teenager denies any role in murder
A TEENAGER accused of involvement in the murder of a stranger in a Shepshed car park told a jury he had no idea his friend was going to kill anyone.
Mason Casey (18) described fleeing in panic when Mark Law got out of a car saying he had stabbed the driver, whom they had only just met.
The victim, 45-year-old Tim Smith, who met Law via Badoo, a social networking and dating site, was stabbed through the heart by Law.
Law (20), of Sandringham Drive, Shepshed, has pleaded guilty to murdering Mr Smith, of Tamworth, Staffordshire, and is awaiting sentence.
Casey, of Ludlow Place, Shepshed, denies murder, and has been giving evidence in his defence at Leicester Crown Court.
He told the jury that Law was a long-standing friend, who occasionally talked about “weird stuff” such as cannibalism – which he never took seriously.
Casey, a labourer, said Law had previously talked of killing another man, Michael from Mansfield, whom he had also met on Badoo.
However, he did not think he would really carry out such a crime.
The man Michael never turned up for a meeting, just a few days before Mr Smith was killed.
Casey said he had a girlfriend and was not interested in men, but was aware that Law was bisexual.
He said he had no idea that Law had earlier suggested having “a threesome” to Mr Smith.
He said he accompanied Law to meet Smith, and had he known about the threesome idea he “wouldn’t have gone”.
Casey told the jury he was at Law’s house, on March 16 this year, playing on an Xbox when Law got a message from Tim Smith, a fork lift instructor, saying he was at the bottom of the road.
Casey’s barrister, Robert Woodcock QC asked: “Did he ask you if you wanted to come with him?” “Yes,” Casey said. Mr Woodcock asked : “What were you wearing.”
Casey said: “My work clothes, my work boots.”
They met Mr Smith and got into his silver Ford Focus.
Law directed him to nearby Gelders Hall Industrial Estate, where they parked up, at just after 8.30pm.
Casey told the jury: “I got out to do up my shoelaces.
“I’d grabbed my boots form Mark’s hallway when we left and I hadn’t done them up properly.”
Mr Woodcock: “Why did you want to do them up at that time?”
Casey: “They were undone and it was annoying.”
Mr Woodcock: “Why did you think Mark wanted to meet Tim?” Casey: “I don’t know.” Mr Woodcock: “You knew he had earlier sent Tim an indecent picture, did the possibility of a sexual encounter cross your mind?” Casey: “No.” Mr Woodcock: “Had Mark mentioned to you anything about a threesome?” “No,” said Casey. Casey went on to tell the jury: “He (Law) jumped out of the car and told me he’d stabbed Tim. “I panicked and I left.” He described running off and Law overtaking him.
He was aware of Law throwing something and then hearing a splash, as he described Law disposing of a knife into a nearby pond, where it was later recovered.
Mr Woodcock said: “Did Mark say anything about taking his knife out with him?” Casey: “No.” Mr Woodcock: “Were you aware whether or not Mark had a knife on him when you left?”
“No,” said Casey, who went on to say he had not given any thought about whether Law was armed with a knife.
He said that he knew Law carried a knife on occasions for his own protection.
After running off, they went their separate ways and Casey went home.
Mr Woodcock asked: “However weird or strange that Mark had appeared to be to you in various conversations did you ever believe he was going to kill anyone.” “No,” he said. The prosecution allege that Law and Casey were acting together and the killing was planned.
The trial continues.