February 14, 2022 5.26 pm

Sam Davies murder trial: Defendants tried to mislead police with “utter pack of lies”

Trial resumes with conflicting accounts from the accused

The jury at the Sam Davies murder trial has been told that one of the seven defendants initially told detectives “a complete and utter pack of lies”.

Eric Kesel’s early account in police interviews was that he saw Eimantas Gochman stab 23-year-old Mr Davies in a park between Coleridge Gardens and Browning Drive in Lincoln on May 27 last year.

Kesel, 19, insisted that it was coincidence that he was there at the time because he had been returning home to Browning Drive after having been to a friend’s house for a smoke.

He went on to give a detailed description of a zombie knife and sheath that he claimed Gochman had used, also stating that Gochman had ordered the weapon online while Kesel was present.

At the trial at Nottingham Crown Court on Monday, February 14, Gordon Aspden QC, defending Gochman, was cross-examining DC Steven Hobby, who had conducted Kesel’s interviews along with colleagues.

“You know, don’t you, and he accepted that it was a complete and utter pack of lies?” said Mr Aspden.

“Yes, that was later on,” replied DC Hobby.

“Because the account that he gave you of having gone to [his friend’s] around 10 o’clock and spending time smoking with [the friend] and walking home just didn’t fit with the CCTV, did it?” asked Mr Aspden.

The detective agreed. The CCTV images showed Kesel entering the park from Browning Drive – not from Coleridge Gardens as he had claimed – moments before Mr Davies was stabbed.

Earlier, Mr Aspden had highlighted that Kesel’s description of the knife and sheath was later found to be nothing like the Rambo movie-style weapon which the prosecution says was used in the attack.

The barrister also revisited Kesel’s claim he was not like others on the Ermine estate who liked “women, drugs, gold chains and cars” and that he was helping detectives find who was responsible because Kesel himself was a decent person and innocent.

“On that night, rather than being at [his friend’s] house, he had gone out to supply drugs. So he’d been lying about that,” said Mr Aspden.

He later added: “When he said in his first interview that he was not lying, he was lying about not lying.”

Re-examining DC Hobby, prosecution barrister William Harbage underlined that at the time of Kesel’s early interviews the police hadn’t recovered the weapon subsequently found with Mr Davies’ blood and Gochman’s DNA on it.

Mr Harbage said to DC Hobby: “Did he indicate that he’d heard the murder weapon was somewhere near the Our Lady Church?”

DC Hobby agreed and said a search team had been deployed.

“And did that lead to the recovery of the knife?” said Mr Harbage. “Yes,” replied the detective.

All seven defendants face one count of murder, which they all deny. The trial continues.