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Newmarket's Charles Jessop 'invented gun story' to explain killing, Ipswich Crown Court told

A man accused of murdering a mother-of-two at her Newmarket home was told he had invented the story of her possessing a gun to explain his actions.

Charles Jessop, 29, stood in the witness box for the sixth time at Ipswich Crown Court yesterday as he was cross examined by prosecuting barrister Mark Cotter.

Jessop, formerly of Bakers Row, denies murdering Clare Nash at her Brickfields Avenue home on January 16 last year, but has admitted manslaughter. He has said antidepressant Citalopram affected his state of mind.

Floral tributes left for Clare Nash in Brickfields Avenue, Newmarket
Floral tributes left for Clare Nash in Brickfields Avenue, Newmarket

Jessop told the court that Miss Nash had a gun hidden in the house, and he strangled her in her downstairs toilet because he thought she was searching for the firearm to shoot him after he had stabbed her multiple times at her front door.

But Mr Cotter told the jury Jessop had invented the gun as an attempt to explain his actions, and pointed to a lack of messages to his sister, who he was very close with, as one reason why.

Jessop replied: “I didn’t want to get my sister involved with that gun and that criminal gang.”

The jury heard that when Jessop was restrained on the floor and arrested at the scene by armed police officers he never told them about the gun he said was in the property.

Jessop said he didn’t want to be the one to tell officers about the gun, and assumed they would find the weapon.

But Mr Cotter told the court that this demonstrated he was behaving rationally, yet Jessop had claimed he was in a psychotic game episode.

When asked who was responsible for Miss Nash’s killing, Jessop replied: “It would be mine and the Citalopram.”

The jury were also played a recording of security camera footage from HMP Norwich, where he is on remand, of Jessop attacking a prison worker on April 1 this year.

Asked whose fault the attack was, Jessop said: “It was mine but he was a bully.”

The trial continues.

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