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South Lynn manslaughter trial: 'wife feared attack'

The wife of a man accused of killing a Lynn teenager has told a jury she thought he was going to attack her.

Liam Russell, 32, of Metcalfe Avenue, South Lynn, is accused of the manslaughter of 17-year-old Reece Hornibrook, which he denies.

During the sixth day of his trial at Norwich Crown Court today, Russell's wife, Dominique, said she had been "scared" by Reece's behaviour during the incident last July.

Reece Hornibrook
Reece Hornibrook

The court was told that she had been accused, during cross-examination on Friday, of making up her assertion that Reece had threatened to hit her.

But defence barrister William Carter reminded her that she had said Reece had repeatedly said: "Do you want some, blud?"

He asked: "When he said that to you, what did you take him to mean?"

Mrs Russell replied: "He was going to hit me."

The court also heard a recording of a 999 call in which Reece and Mrs Russell could be heard shouting at each other.

When Mr Carter asked her how that had made her feel, Mrs Russell replied: "Scared."

After that, Mrs Russell’s aunt, Lorraine Linnett, entered the witness box, where she said she had alerted her niece when she realised their car had been damaged.

She said she had been asked to mind the couple’s children while Mrs Russell and Mrs Linnett’s husband went to find the group they believed were responsible.

When they returned, she said she had intervened to tell Reece “not to get in Dominique’s face” and claimed the defendant had remained calm.

But, under cross-examination by prosecution barrister Stephen Spence, she conceded Russell had become annoyed during the incident, though she maintained that was only because of Reece’s behaviour towards him.

During increasingly heated exchanges, she denied Mr Spence’s claim Reece was not as aggressive as had been suggested, though she accepted police could have been called earlier.

She also claimed that she had not stated that Russell went to walk away as she had not been asked.

At one point, Mr Carter intervened, saying: “This isn’t an exercise in berating the witness.”

And Mrs Linnett broke down in tears as she later said: “I haven’t come here to lie.

“That noise (when Reece hit the ground) will be with me for the rest of my life.”

The trial continues.

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