Leeds: ‘I thought he was going to headbutt me,’ says accused

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A man accused of killing another man who suspected him of having an affair with his wife told a court he threw a punch as he feared he was about to be attacked.

Alexander Frew, 43, gave evidence at a trial yesterday where he denies the manslaughter of Matthew Welford.

Mr Welford, 41, died eight days after the alleged attack outside Garforth Country Club on June 4 this year.

The jury at Leeds Crown Court has seen CCTV footage of Frew striking Mr Welford as the two men argued in the car park outside. The prosecution claim Mr Welford believed the defendant and his wife Sarah were in an intimate relationship at the time of the incident. Frew, of Hazelwood Avenue, Garforth, said Mr Welford had been agressive towards him in the build-up to the incident and had told him to stay out of his marriage.

Frew’s barrister, Jonathan Swain, asked him to describe the moments before he threw the punch. Mr Swaine said: “What did you think was about to happen?” Frew replied: “I honestly believed Matthew Welford was going to assault me by using his head - headbutting me.” The barrister then asked: “You tried to placate him. Had it worked at all?” Frew said: “No.”

Mr Swain then asked: “Did he seem to be in control of himself at that point? “ Frew said: “No, I believe he had lost it and I was scared.”

Frew said he went into shock when he saw that Mr Welford was unconscious and badly hurt after hitting his head. Mr Swaine asked Frew how he felt when he was told Mr Welford had died. Frew told the court he was “heartbroken”.

During cross examination by prosecuting barrister Ian Brook, Frew denied suggestions that people at the club considered the two men and Mrs Welfrod to be in a “love triangle”.


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