Page last updated at 18:02 GMT, Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Teenager 'stabbed in street row'

Courtney Eaton
Courtney Eaton: 'Attacked as he went to buy cigarettes'

A teenager stabbed a boy to death in a street fight before shouting that he was going to slit the youth's throat, Manchester Crown Court has heard.

The court was told Stuart Fagan, 18, had downed half a bottle of brandy when he got into a row with Courtney Eaton, 17, when he stabbed him.

He is alleged to have plunged a silver folding knife into his victim at least four times, the court was told.

Mr Fagan, of James Henry Avenue, Ordsall, Salford, has denied murder.

Two of the wounds penetrated up to 15cm and causing fatal organ damage, severing a main artery and vein and causing catastrophic internal bleeding.

'Slanging match'

Graham Wood, QC, prosecuting said such an attack typifies "the behaviour of some young people whose judgment is impaired by excessive drink and who seem to think strutting aggression and not standing down is the answer to everything."

Both teenagers had been in separate groups, but their paths crossed on 5 September 2008 in Eccles as Courtney and his friends went to buy cigarettes.

Mr Fagan was having a "slanging match" with his girlfriend in the street at the time and comments may have been exchanged between both groups, but it is not known what sparked the confrontation, the jury were told.

The court was told the defendant unfolded the blade, took it out of his pocket and began waving it around as pushing and shoving began between the two groups.

Stumbled backwards

Courtney, from Eccles, backed off, but Fagan is alleged to have lunged at him, stabbing him four times.

The victim stumbled backwards and collapsed on the ground, fracturing his jaw as he fell.

Mr Fagan then shouted: "I'm gonna slit your throat" and "Come on I'll do it again", Mr Wood told the jury.

The victim remained conscious until paramedics and police arrived but later died in hospital.

The defendant learned of the death and contacted his solicitor before going to police two days later.

He told officers: "I didn't mean to kill him. I just wanted to get him away from me."

Mr Fagan said Courtney had gone towards him twice and had come into "contact" with the blade.

He has admitted carrying the weapon for self protection and has already pleaded guilty to carrying a knife in a public place, but denies murder.

The trial continues.

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