A Louth man who denies the manslaughter of his friend told police he tried to help him after finding his body, a court heard today, (Tuesday, January 20).
Harry Scott is alleged to have trapped Richard Woods in the loft of his home in Spring Terrace, Louth. The prosecution claim Mr Woods, 32, tried to climb out but became wedged between two steps of the loft ladder and was asphyxiated.
Scott, 23, is alleged to have repeatedly struck Mr Woods with a length of wood while he was trapped rather than making any effort to help him.
But during his first interview with the police following Mr Woods’ death on January 12 last year, Scott said he tried to help his drinking pal after discovering him hanging through the steps of the loft ladder.
Giving his first account of the incident during questioning at Skegness Police Station Scott explained: “I just see him there and tried to help.”
Scott told officers he realised something was wrong when he felt Mr Woods’ body and it was cool. Scott said he could not find a house phone and tripped over a basket before going out in to the street to alert neighbours by trying doors and shouting “help,help, help.”
“I was screaming like, I was in bits,” Scott said.
Scott said he failed to get any answers and eventually went to a friend’s home to raise the alarm.
The jury at Lincoln Crown Court were played a video of Scott’s interviews with the police. They heard Scott spoke to a police officer at Louth Police Station following the discovery of Mr Woods body and during the conversation said: “All I did was find the body and lift him up.”
During his first interview Scott also confirmed he later told another officer during a conversation in the holding area at Skegness Police Station “I’m in trouble for something I haven’t done.”
Scott told the interviewing officers he had spent the early part of the previous evening drinking cans of cider at home with his brother. Scott said he noticed Mr Woods had shaved off his eyebrows and hair when arrived at his home around 9pm and already appeared drunk after stumbling on the stairs.
When asked how he got on with Mr Woods, Scott explained he had known him for quite a few years and said: “We get on, we have a laugh and that.”
Scott told the officers he walked in to Louth town centre with Mr Woods shortly after 10.30pm and by that time he had drunk four cans of cider and two cans of larger. Scott said the two men visited the Turks Head pub and Moomin’s nightclub, but Mr Woods went home before him.
Scott said he eventually walked to Mr Woods’ home and let himself in. “I opened the door because it was already unlocked and I was shouting up to him.”
Scott told the officers he had some food and then discovered Mr Woods after going upstairs.
Scott, of Ramsgate, Louth, denies a charge of manslaughter as a result of the incident on January 12 last year.
The trial continues....