Page last updated at 17:44 GMT, Tuesday, 21 July 2009 18:44 UK

Model's boyfriend fled 'to pray'

Amy Leigh Barnes
Amy Leigh Barnes had been stabbed at least nine times

A man accused of stabbing his model girlfriend to death has told a court he found her bleeding and dying but fled the scene to "pray for her".

Ricardo Morrison said he put Amy Leigh Barnes in the recovery position after finding her in a pool of blood at their home in Bolton in November 2008.

The 21-year-old told Manchester Crown Court that his "baby" had been stabbed before he arrived home.

The amateur footballer, from Birmingham, denies her murder.

"I was scared, I was in shock, I was in denial about what I had seen. I was in complete shock," he told the jury.

After leaving her, he said he went to a church but the gates were locked so he wandered around holding his cross and praying.

Considering I had touched Amy and touched myself afterwards, I was mindful that part of her body would have been on myself
Ricardo Morrison

He then took a train from Manchester to Birmingham, arriving at his mother's house a few hours later.

Mr Morrison told the jury that his mother, Pc Melda Wilks, asked him if he had harmed Miss Barnes.

He replied: "I would not do that. You know how much I love her, how much she means to me, Mum."

He also explained why he had washed his clothes soon after the attack on Miss Barnes, adding that his mother had allowed him to do so.

He said: "Considering I had touched Amy and touched myself afterwards, I was mindful that part of her body would have been on myself."

Liver perforated

Miss Barnes had been stabbed nine times, with such force that her liver had been perforated.

Mr Morrison said he, his mother and sister sat and prayed for Miss Barnes, before he was arrested by police later that evening.

Earlier Mr Morrison told the court he and Miss Barnes were engaged and trying for a baby.

The pair rowed constantly about money and when either of them went out at night separately, he said.

He told the court that he did not know his girlfriend had visited Fort Alice, a local project for young women suffering domestic violence, nor did he know that she was seeing a number of men while they were together.

Pc Wilks, 49, of Hollyhill Road, Rubery, a police officer with the West Midlands force, is in the dock beside her son.

She denies assisting her son by destroying forensic evidence.

The trial continues.

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