Man ‘wore mask to execute gay couple’
A man has gone on trial for “execution-style” murder of a Bradford gay man and the attempted murder of his partner.
Newcastle crown court heard yesterday that Ernest Wright, 68, took a sawn-off shotgun to the home of Neville Corby, 42, and Craig Freear, 31, last March.
Corby died after being shot in the chest and head, while Freear survived a life-threatening gunshot wound to the chest.
Wright denies murder, attempted murder, and two charges of having a firearm with intent to commit murder.
The Bradford Telegraph and Argus reports that the court was told he went to the couple’s house in Ashbourne Road, Bolton, on the morning of March 30th 2009 with the gun and a balaclava covering his face.
He is said to have confronted Freear as he was setting off for work and followed him inside the house, where he fired shots at both men.
The couple escaped upstairs as Wright shot Corby in the chest, prosecutors said.
The court heard that Freear was shot in the shoulder before he escaped from a bathroom window.
Prosecutors said that Wright then blasted a hole through the bedroom door where Corby was hiding which hit him in the chest.
Corby was shot again in the shoulder before Wright allegedly clubbed him in the head with the shotgun and fired one final point-blank shot which severed the dead man’s jugular vein.
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Prosecutor Richard Mansell QC told the jury: “This was nothing short of the execution of a defenceless man.”
He told the court that Wright then left the house in Freear’s car and collected Freear’s mother Melissa Crocker from a flat in Shipley they lived in together.
The pair allegedly drove to a solicitor’s office in Leeds to take out an injunction against Freear and Corby.
Wright then went into hiding and was arrested 30 days later.
DNA evidence linked him to a shotgun cartridge found on the stairs at the property, the court heard.
The trial is expected to last three weeks.
Related topics: England