Great Britain

Murder accused had specks on his shoes and bruising to his face, court told

A MURDER accused had specks on his shoes and bruising to his face shortly after a man was found dead in the street, a jury heard yesterday.

Rashpal Singh Gill was arrested at the scene after Paul Ackroyd was found lying in Jinnah Court, Manningham, Bradford, with fatal head injuries.

Police constable Eamon McGinley told Bradford Crown Court that Gill, known as Raja, had a large bruise on his nose and one under his eye.

PC McGinley said he arrived at the scene just after 4am on February 23, 2019, to be met by paramedics who told him Mr Ackroyd was dead.

Gill, 40, of Leeds Road, Bradford; Alex Bates, 19, of Eastfield Gardens, Holme Wood, Bradford; and Mohammed Jawaid Khan, 53, of Leylands Lane, Heaton, Bradford, plead not guilty to murdering Mr Ackroyd, 37, who was known as Acky.

Kirsty Rushworth, 32, of Walker Avenue, Lidget Green, Bradford, denies assisting an offender by removing his body from a flat at 10 Jinnah Court. Gill and Khan also plead not guilty to that charge.

PC McGinley said Rushworth and Khan were at the flat. She told him she had called an ambulance for Mr Ackroyd while using the name Mia because she wanted to remain anonymous.

Khan was cleaning up at the address; he was smoking a cigarette and “easy going” with him, the officer stated.

Sergeant David Armstrong said Mr Ackroyd’s body was lying half on the pavement and half in some bushes. He had no shoes on and his wallet was on the ground nearby. He was identified from bank cards in the wallet which contained no money.

Gill came over and then went to the door at number ten. He appeared to be drunk, Sgt Armstrong said.

Khan was sweeping up in the kitchen at the flat. There were no signs of a disturbance and he wasn’t clearing up anything out of the ordinary.

He said he had done nothing wrong and at first he didn’t want to go to the police station to make a witness statement.

They all said they did not know what had happened.

Irena Gaziova said that a man she later knew was Mr Ackroyd asked her for a cigarette in the street earlier that night.

“He seems a nice person,” she told the police.

Raja shook his hand forcefully and Miss Gaziova said she shouted to him: “Oi, leave him alone.”

But Gill told her: “It’s okay we are friends” and Mr Ackroyd patted him on the shoulder.

Miss Gaziova said she went to 10 Jinnah Court that she knew as “Khany’s house.”

She did not see Mr Ackroyd lying in the street but she saw his body after the police had arrived.

Miss Gaziova said that Gill came into the flat and Rushworth said to him: “What did you do, did you rob him?”

He replied: “What are you talking about; why are you lying?”

Prosecutor Peter Moulson QC alleges that Mr Ackroyd was murdered in a sustained assault in the flat and dragged dying into the street.

The jury has been told that Bates and Khan have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and Gill has admitted being concerned in the supply of cocaine.

The trial continues.

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