Tyne & Wear

Alice Ruggles murder accused 'panicked and ran'

Alice Ruggles Image copyright Northumbria Police
Image caption Alice Ruggles grew up in Leicestershire but stayed in Newcastle after studying at Northumbria University

A soldier accused of killing his former girlfriend told a court he panicked and ran away after she accidentally stabbed herself.

Alice Ruggles, 24, was found with her throat cut at her Gateshead home in October.

L/Cpl Trimaan "Harry" Dhillon - serving with the 2 Scots - denies murder.

He told Newcastle Crown Court she lunged at him with a carving knife during an argument, and fell on it as he tried to disarm her.

The 26-year-old said he had climbed into her flat through a window, she came at him, and there was a struggle as he got her into the bathroom.

She dropped the knife and fell unconscious, but when she recovered became "infuriated" after he said he was going to meet another woman.

'Knife stuck in neck'

He said: "She was moving forwards and I was moving towards her. I moved forward to deflect her arm.

"I remember saying 'Alice' and she fell on her right side."

The Indian-born soldier said the knife was stuck in her neck, and with some difficulty he pulled it out.

When asked why he did not call 999, he said: "I don't know, I panicked at the time.

"If I am honest, I initially wanted to get out of the situation.

"I didn't know how to react to it. I panicked and I ran away."

He was arrested on his return to his barracks outside Edinburgh.

Earlier in the hearing, the court heard he had been warned by the Army and police to stay away from Ms Ruggles, after she complained about him harassing her following the end of their relationship.

The trial continues.

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