BBC News, July 14, 2009
The father of a model, allegedly stabbed to death by her boyfriend, found her lying in the foetal position in a pool of blood, a court has heard.
Andrew Barnes discovered his daughter, Amy Leigh, 19, with her “eyes half open” and “struggling to breathe” at her grandmother’s house in Bolton.
She had been slashed and stabbed nine times, Manchester Crown Court heard.
Ricardo Morrison, 21, from Birmingham, denies murder. His mother, Pc [sic] Melda Wilks, denies assisting an offender.
‘I’ll kill him’
Mr Barnes told jurors he entered the terraced house in Moss Street just before midnight on 8 November, 2008, to find his daughter on the floor at the bottom of the stairs.
“She had cuts to her face and she was lying in the foetal position,” he said.
He dialled 999 and spoke to the same operator that his daughter had spoken to just minutes before.
The court heard she had called the emergency services pleading with them to help her, saying, “He’s stabbed me to death . . . my boyfriend”.
Sgt Andrew Smith was the first officer on the scene.
He told the court that Mr Barnes had heard a loud bang at the back of the property which sounded like a door being shut.
Sgt Smith said: “Mr Barnes said, ‘It’s him, it will be him, he might still be in the house’.
“Mr Barnes ran outside. I ran after him and I heard him shout, ‘Where is he? He’s here, I’ll kill him’.
“I asked who was he talking about. He said Ricardo Morrison.”
‘I love him’
Shortly before she was killed Ms Barnes had spoken to her mother, Karyn Killiner, who also gave evidence, telling the court she had had concerns about her daughter’s relationship with Mr Morrison.
She told the court that her daughter pleaded with her to come and get her from her grandmother’s house.
“She said to me, ‘Will you come now?’ and started to cry. I said, ‘Yes darling’.
“She said she wanted to come home and that he had said some awful things to her. She had told him that he’s not going to control her any more.”
The couple had been together for a year, and in August 2008, the model’s grandmother Catherine Barnes allowed them to stay with her as a “temporary arrangement”.
Under cross examination from Johannah Cutts QC, defending Mr Morrison, Mrs Barnes agreed her granddaughter had lots of friends and liked socialising, but the defendant wanted her to spend time with him.
A month after they moved in Ms Barnes asked him to leave her grandmother’s house after he told her he was helping a friend move from Birmingham to Manchester–but in fact he had gone out alone to a club.
But she told her grandmother: “I love him, I can’t finish with him, I can’t keep him away.”
The trial continues.
BBC, July 13, 2009
A young model dialled 999 as she lay dying and pleaded for help saying her boyfriend had “stabbed her to death”, a court has heard.
Amy Leigh Barnes’ father found her in a pool of blood at her grandmother’s house in Bolton, Greater Manchester.
The 19-year-old’s boyfriend, Ricardo Morrison, denied murdering her when he appeared at Manchester Crown Court.
His police officer mother, Pc [sic] Melda Wilks, from the West Midlands, was also in court and denies assisting her son.
The court heard that Ms Barnes, a part-time model and actress, had been killed with a kitchen knife in November last year.
Stuart Driver, prosecuting, recounted her desperate plea to the operator at the end of her 999 call.
“I’m dying. He’s stabbed me to death. I’m dying. Please help me.”
The operator asked who had stabbed her and she said, “My boyfriend”, the court heard.
He said Ms Barnes had been slashed across the face and she had five wounds to her chest and four to her back, several of which had penetrated her liver.
At this point the defendant turned his back and ran towards the cells.
Following Mr Morrison’s return to the dock, Mr Driver told the court that Ms Barnes had tried to end the relationship that day and he had attacked her before leaving, locking her in the house.
Later, she rang her mother in tears, and it was agreed her father would come to pick her up.
Two minutes after that call ended she dialled 999 to say she had been “stabbed to death”.
“Her father turned up, opened the front door and found his daughter at the bottom of the stairs, a pool of blood beneath her.
“You can imagine his reaction, his panic,” Mr Driver said.
Ms Barnes was taken to the Royal Bolton Infirmary where she died three hours later.
The court heard that a neighbour had spotted a man, fitting Mr Morrison’s description, on wasteland shortly after she had been attacked.
“The witness said the man bent down and put his hand into a puddle and appeared to be rinsing his hands,” Mr Driver said.
A blood-stained knife, which had DNA belonging to the young model, was found stuck in an abandoned car seat on the wasteland.
The defendant caught a coach to Birmingham where his mother, Pc Wilks, who lives in Rubery, picked him up, it is alleged.
Mr Driver told the jury that she washed his jacket “for a criminal purpose to remove any forensic scientific evidence”.
Ms Barnes’s mother, Karyn, phoned Pc Wilks from the hospital soon after the attack.
“She told her that Amy had been stabbed and accused her son, Ricardo Morrison, of doing it,” he said.
Pc Wilks then sent a text to Ms Barnes’ mother: “I know what my son has done is unforgivable. No need to be rude. Now I understand more about your family.
“Do not call me again. My son will be dealt with by law.”
Morrison said in his defence statement that he was not at the house when the attack took place.
He said he returned to the house in Bolton, discovered she had been stabbed and put her in the recovery position before he left the scene.
Mr Driver disputed this, saying it would have meant that another person must have stabbed Amy in the space of two minutes–the gap in which Ms Barnes finished on the phone to her mother and when she dialled 999.
The trial continues.