Belfast Telegraph

Father gave sex offender son lift home from bingo then stabbed him to death, court is told

By Aisling Scally

A father stabbed his son to death in his sitting room after he gave him a lift home from bingo, a court has been told.

Kevin Fletcher (62) is accused of murdering his sex offender son, also named Kevin, in September 2010.

Newry Crown Court heard that the 32-year-old victim had used his mother's phone to call his father for a lift on the day of his death.

It is alleged that Mr Fletcher, from Drumarg Park in Armagh, drove his son home and drank coffee with him. The accused claims that when he left the apartment, his son was alive on the sofa.

But Fletcher jnr was found dead the next day by his girlfriend and neighbours. There was no sign of forced entry or struggle at his apartment, and no bolts were locked.

A barrister for the prosecution said Fletcher jnr had been fearful for his personal safety. He had had bolts fitted to the inside of his front door and kept them constantly locked when he was in the flat.

The lawyer said Fletcher jnr was considered a burden to his family and his behaviour had created tension between his close relatives.

A psychiatrist told the court that the deceased had assaulted his mother on Christmas Day in 2009.

The psychiatrist also said he had been admitted to hospital following a threat to assault his father with a dumbbell, and that he had been treated for a personality disorder and depression.

The prosecution barrister told the jury of six men and six women that the deceased had a history of mental health problems.

He said he was a drug user and dealer. He had been threatened by paramilitaries in Lurgan and had moved to Armagh.

The court heard he had a conviction for a sexual offence and was under investigation over a series of historical sexual offences at the time of his death. Judge Kevin Finnegan was also told that Fletcher jnr had a promiscuous lifestyle.

The prosecution claims a bloody footprint found at the scene of the crime was a size eight, the size worn by the dead man’s father. The shoe has never been recovered. The Crown Court heard the accused gave police a grey T-shirt that he claimed to have been wearing on the night of the murder. CCTV showed he was wearing a yellow T-shirt that has never been found.

A doctor who examined Mr Fletcher snr five days after the murder said there were no signs of bruising or abrasions.

The victim’s landlord, Patrick McGee, said that he didn't know the dead man very well but that on one occasion Fletcher jnr told him he was going to change his locks as a girlfriend said she was going to stab him or cut his throat.

On another occasion, around six months before the murder, the landlord said he happened to meet his tenant, who had bad cuts on his face. Mr McGee told the court that Fletcher Jnr told him his drink had been spiked and he had been in a fight.

The trial continues.

Belfast Telegraph


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