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Richard Helm: Murder victim 'ran onto' knife that killed him says accused

By John Scott | Wolverhampton | Crime | Published:

The man accused of murdering father-of-four Richard Helm claimed the victim ‘ran onto’ the knife that killed him, a jury heard.

Richard Helm, inset, was found stabbed outside a house in Wolverhampton along with a burned out Land Rover

Danny Cooper was supposedly staying overnight with his friend Ashley Wilson at the home of Matty Stinson in Wolverhampton when tragedy struck during the early hours of October 12.

Mr Helm and his brother Anthony went to the address in Raven Crescent, Ashmore Park, wrongly believing Stinson had attacked their sister Kelsie and smashed windows in her home and car shortly after midnight.

However Cooper was the real culprit, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.

'I have a conscience, you know'

Cooper, 32, told police after the incident: “I was falling asleep when I heard a car pull up outside. I saw two males punching and kicking Matty. It was a sustained attack and he was rolled up in a ball.

“Ashley and I tried to get outside but Richard was holding the porch door shut. I kicked the door, Richard staggered and dropped a knife.

“I did not come out of the house with a knife but saw one lying on the ground outside and picked it up.

Police forensic teams at the scene where Richard Helm died

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"Richard Helm was extremely aggressive, like a raging bull and said ‘you’ to me as if I was responsible.

“He came running towards me with an arm raised and fist clenched. I did not pull my arm back to stab him. He came at me as if making a rugby tackle and came onto the knife.

"My actions were all in self defence. I could not have avoided the knife entering him.”

Cooper concluded: “I did not set out to do this. I have a conscience, you know.”

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Dead at the scene

He and Wilson left as Stinson tried to revive the dying man, from Stanley Close, Ashmore Park, who was certified dead at the scene at 5.49am.

The prosecution claim that Cooper took the bread knife that killed the victim from a block in the kitchen on the way out of the house and plunged the blade through one of the victim’s ribs, six inches into the chest and right through his heart.

More from the trial:

The defendant’s DNA was found on the handle of the knife and traces of the blood of the deceased were on the blade, the jury was told.

His fingerprints were also discovered on the block from which the knife was allegedly removed, added Mr Stephen Linehan QC, prosecuting.

Cooper was arrested at a flat in Maytree Close, Chelmsley Wood nine days later.

Wilson aged 27 and from Guernsey Drive, Chelmsley Wood gave himself up to police on October 14 and gave four ‘no comment’ interviews.

Both defendants deny murder while Cooper admits assault and criminal damage. The case continues.

John Scott

By John Scott
Reporter/News Feature Writer

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