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Teen accused of stabbing claims victim made drug debt death threats

Teen accused of stabbing claims victim made drug debt death threats

Saturday 11 March 2023

Teen accused of stabbing claims victim made drug debt death threats

Saturday 11 March 2023

A 19-year-old accused of leaving a teenager for dead after a knife attack alongside three other young men has claimed the victim threatened to kill him, his family and his girlfriend if he did not resolve an unpaid cannabis debt.

Alex Diogo Franca De Jesus (19) is charged with attempted murder and possession of an offensive weapon in a public place, while two teenagers, who cannot be named, are charged with grave and criminal assault and affray. All three deny the charges against them.

An 18-year-old man, Jayden Howard, has already admitted attempted murder and is not involved in the trial.

On the third day of the Royal Court trial, Mr De Jesus said that he felt "terrified" as a result of threats from the stabbing victim.

Mr De Jesus said the victim had contacted him on the morning of 9 January and had arranged to meet him that night.

He said, "I thought he would stop the threats and give me time to pay," adding that Howard had offered to come with him "to make sure I was safe" and that they both agreed to take knives with them for their own protection.

The 19-year-old added that he wanted to become a police officer and was studying a uniformed-services course at Highlands College with the ambition of joining the police at the time of the incident.

A police interview with one of the two unnamed teenagers was also read out in court, in which he said that he and the other unnamed teenager had gone out that night with Mr De Jesus and Howard but they had not taken part in the attack.

He said: "I didn't touch him. I didn't hit him. I had no idea what was going to happen,' adding that he had seen Howard lunge at the victim with a knife and Mr De Jesus reach into his pocket for his own knife – but did not see him use it.

The teenager told police that he "saw the handle coming out of his [Mr De Jesus's] pocket" but that he and the other teenager had fled before they saw anything more.
Asked in the interview, "Were you involved in the attack in any way?", he replied: "But for the fact that I was there, no."

Elsewhere in the trial, the jury heard a clip of the 999 call made by the victim, who needed emergency treatment in Southampton for his stab wounds.

In the call, which was made around 20 minutes after he was attacked, the young man is heard to say, "I'm dying. Please be quick," and to call out in a weak voice: "Help."

The operator asked him: "What part of your body is injured?"

The victim replied: "Everywhere."

The trial continues in the Royal Court on Monday.

More on the case...

Teen "left for dead" after drug debt stabbing attack, court told

Police officer recalls moment he found stab victim with blade in his back

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