Steven Barrett murder accused ‘had no reason to kill’

Steven Barrett
Steven Barrett
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A MAN accused of murdering his former RAF pilot partner in a knife attack told a court on Monday that he “would have no reason to do such a thing.”

Darren McLauchlan, 24, said he found Steven Barrett at a bedroom in a flat they had moved to in Lochend Butterfly Way after a night out in Edinburgh with a friend Shannon Nisbet.

He said he was down by the bed “in a sort of kneeling position” and added: “He looked like he was trying to get himself up.”

“The first thing he said to me was to get out the room,” he said, adding that at that point he did not see a knife.

“He repeatedly told me to get out and not to go near him,” he told the High Court in Edinburgh.

But he said that when he came to the bottom of the bed where he was he saw a knife.

McLauchlan said his head “was all over the place” and he was crying and screaming at Mr Barrett “what have you done”.

He said he was screaming ‘why, why’ and Mr Barrett told him to say it happened outside.

He called an ambulance and was told to get a towel and wrap it on him and apply pressure.

Mr McLauchlan said one of the last things he said to the ambulance personnel was that he thought he was going to die.

He said he knew there were a number of issues in Mr Barrett’s life that he was facing, including telling his parents that he was gay and redundancy fears at the airline Flybe.

McLauchlan, a former accountancy student from Glasgow, has denied murdering Mr Barrett, 27, by stabbing him on the body on April 6 last year. He also faces a further charge of attempting to defeat the end of justice.

He said that earlier in the evening they had gone to the Opal Lounge in George Street with Miss Nisbet, 24. But he estimated they were only there for 25 to 30 minutes before getting a cab and stopping at a takeaway to get food on their way to the flat.

After they returned to the flat they were sitting at a table before Mr Barrett got up to leave the room. McLauchlan said he asked if he was going to bed and he replied “yes”.

McLauchlan said he later went to the bathroom and texted another man after he had had a “shit night” with Mr Barrett.

The trial, before judge Michael O’Grady QC, continues.