A 13-year-old schoolgirl died from ‘catastrophic bleeding’ after a 25-year-old lodger slashed and stabbed her 27 times with a knife.
The teen’s stepfather allegedly told the accused to move out of their home months before the attack happened.
Stephen Nicholson, who had been staying in the room opposite the girl’s, is on trial after he allegedly had a sexual relationship with the schoolgirl since she was 12.
The girl’s stepfather, 22-year-old Richard Elmes, said to Winchester Crown Court that Nicholson was one of his best friends when they were young. He allowed him to rent one of their rooms in Southampton.
“In December 2017, we had a discussion that he needed to move out. But it didn’t happen,” said Mr. Elmes, the partner of teen’s mother, 31-year-old Stacey.
He said that Lucy and Nicholson had some fights that seemed like ‘normal, family disputes.’
“He [Nicholson] didn’t deal with her very well. Arguing with Lucy would be like arguing with a brick wall, she wanted to win and he didn’t like that.
“On July 22, last year, I was in the garden and I heard an argument. I went inside and told Mr Nicholson he should grab his stuff and leave as the situation was not getting any better.
“As he left, she said in a calm but loud voice ‘Well I have got a hold on you anyway’.
“Lucy came to me after that and said she wanted to speak to us when Stacey got back home, but that conversation didn’t ever happen.”
He added: “I would say it was like Lucy had a schoolgirl crush on Mr Nicholson.
“There was one occasion when I came downstairs and opened the kitchen door and he was stood stiff as Lucy was giving him a hug. He pushed her away as I walked in.
“He said she was upset and wanted a cuddle but he didn’t want to cuddle her.”
It was discovered that Lucy kept a diary about sexual activities with Nicholson, describing the lodger as ‘an ass when we aren’t having sex.’
In a text message to Stacey before the attack happened, Nicholson said: “Every time I come out my bedroom or the toilet your daughter tries to grab me. When I tell her to piss off she tries to push me down the stairs.
“Next time she does, I am going to throw her down them. Next time she puts her hand over my mouth when I tell her to f*** off, I am going down to her school and paying a group of girls to beat her up.”
Nicholson also complained about Lucy following him and always coming out of her room in only her underwear.
Hours before Nicholson stabbed her to death, he borrowed a jigsaw and a circular saw from her stepfather.
An investigation has been carried out by social services after Lucy told friends she was in a secret relationship with the 25-year-old lodger but Mr. Elmes claimed he knew nothing about it.
Nicholson denied murdering Lucy and three charges of sexually assaulting her when she was 12. He also denied two counts of sexual activity when she was 13.
The trial goes on.
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