Northampton

Daniel Fitzjohn murder: Accused 'only wanted to scare' group

Daniel Fitzjohn Image copyright Northamptonshire Police
Image caption Daniel Fitzjohn's family were "devastated" by news of his death, said police

A man who armed himself with a machete "only wanted to scare" a group of people they were chasing before a fatal stabbing, a jury has heard.

Daniel Fitzjohn, 34, died in hospital after the attack in the Kingsley area of Northampton on 14 June.

Daniel Quinn, 28, and Parminder Sanghera, 25, both of no fixed abode, deny murder.

Mr Sanghera told Northampton Crown Court they only intended to "smash" a car.

The defendants were from the Wolverhampton area, the court heard, and had been in Northampton because Mr Quinn sold drugs in the town.

The court was told Mr Fitzjohn had never met either of the accused but a man he was with had bought drugs from Mr Quinn on the night of the attack.

Mr Fitzjohn and his friends were involved in an "altercation" with Mr Quinn at Fairfield News in Kingsley at about 21:25 BST.

Giving evidence, Mr Sanghera said Mr Quinn came to find him at a nearby address and told him his grey Mini had been "smashed up", and wanted his help to "bash" a car belonging to one of Mr Fitzjohn's friends in revenge.

Mr Sanghera was armed with a machete kept in the Mini, the court was told, but he said he did not know Mr Quinn was holding a knife.

Mr Sanghera admitted chasing the men but said he "only wanted to scare them", and after they ran off, he told Mr Quinn "we haven't come for this [a fight], let's go".

'Panicked'

The pair got back into the Mini, but Mr Sanghera said Mr Quinn pulled up on Carlton Road in a manner that was "sort of sudden" and got out without saying why.

Mr Sanghera said he was "panicked, nervous, scared" and got into the driver's seat with the intention of leaving the area.

He said he did not see the alleged stabbing of Mr Fitzjohn by Mr Quinn, and did not see him with a knife at any point.

At the opening of the case, prosecutors said that while their case was that Mr Quinn stabbed Mr Fitzjohn, Mr Sanghera was "part and parcel" of what happened and that his "behaviour makes him guilty of murder".

The trial continues.

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