North East Wales

Denbigh murder accused 'did not remember' knife attack

Laura Stuart Image copyright North Wales Police

A man accused of murdering his ex-partner with a knife has told a jury he did not remember most of the attack which killed her.

Jason Cooper, 28, of Denbigh, said he was in the worst place he had ever been in the lead up to the attack on Laura Stuart in the town centre last August.

Mold Crown Court heard he had been drinking heavily and had been thinking of harming himself with the knife.

He denies murder and wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

Under questioning from defence barrister Patrick Harrington QC, Mr Cooper described his relationship with Ms Stuart as "toxic".

He told the court they had drunk too much during their time together, spending every weekend and evening drinking in pubs in Denbigh and at home.

On the morning of 11 August leading up to the attack, he told the court he had started drinking at home, then went to the RAF club in Denbigh and continued drinking for the rest of the day.

He said he did not know why he had gone to get a kitchen knife from his home but said he had held it to his own throat and could only think he had intended to kill himself.

He denied intending to harm Ms Stuart and said he was just wandering around the town when he came across her and a friend, David Roberts - whom he is also accused of stabbing.

"I remember... shouting, and I remember stabbing... I can't say where or how many times," he told the court.

Asked by Mr Harrington if he had any intention of harming Ms Stuart, Mr Cooper said he had not, and had no recollection of sending threatening messages earlier in the evening.

The court has previously heard Mr Cooper had lain in wait for Ms Stuart as she returned home from The Golden Lion pub and stabbed her before attacking Mr Roberts when he tried to intervene.

Image copyright Google
Image caption The alleged incident happened in Denbigh town centre

Under cross-examination by prosecutor David Elias QC, Mr Cooper said he had no idea why he had stabbed Ms Stuart.

He denied stalking her through the town and then lying in wait for her with the knife, saying he was "just walking around" and did "not know what I was doing".

When he was asked why he killed her, he replied, "I don't know...I wasn't well".

Earlier he told the court: "My mind had gone. I don't know what happened.

"If I could have explained what was going on it would not have happened. It is not who I am at all."

Mr Cooper said he was an alcoholic who had been drunk all the time, and denied exaggerating this in court.

But Mr Elias said police bodycam footage showed he was perfectly sober and could tell police who searched him what was in his pockets.

He said Mr Cooper knew exactly what was going on, which the defendant denied.

Mr Cooper said: "I did not know what was going on. It was all confusing. It was a mess."

His mother Sheila Cooper said the second time Mr Cooper and Ms Stuart split up he had been upset and emotional and had changed from the son "I knew that he was".

The trial continues.

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