Suffolk

Tavis Spencer-Aitkens: Murder accused's 'life in danger'

Tavis Spencer-Aitkens Image copyright Family Photo
Image caption Tavis Spencer-Aitkens, 17, was stabbed 15 times

A man on trial accused of a murdering a teenager addressed the victim's family, saying "I'm not to blame for your son's death".

Tavis Spencer-Aitkens, 17, died after he was stabbed 15 times and hit on the head with a bottle in Ipswich in June.

Aristote Yenge, 23, told the court "everyone thinks I'm scum" but, while using a swear word, said: "I'm innocent, that's the truth."

At Ipswich Crown Court, Mr Yenge, four other men and a boy, 16, deny murder.

Under cross-examination by the prosecution, Mr Yenge told the court evidence he gave on Tuesday "caused me drama" and his life was now in "danger".

Image caption Left to right: Aristote Yenge, 23; Adebayo Amusa, 20; Callum Plaats, 23; Isaac Calver, 19; Leon Glasgow, 42, and the 16-year-old boy (front) who cannot be named

He had told the court he had mistakenly left a top behind in the van prosecutors say was driven to the scene of Tavis's murder.

Mr Yenge suggested someone else had been wearing it when Tavis was killed.

He said: "I've stood up and said this guy wearing my jumper went on to kill Tavis.

"I was called names. I've got to go back to prison. If you get called a snitch, you can't survive."

Image caption Tavis was attacked in the Nacton estate area of Ipswich

Mr Yenge told the court: "I'm here because of a jumper.

"I've been in jail for eight months. The mother of my own baby won't speak to me; she thinks I killed Tavis. Everyone thinks I'm scum."

Mr Yenge turned to the public gallery and told Tavis's family: "I'm not to blame for your son's death."

Image caption Flowers and messages of condolence were left at a shrine where Tavis was stabbed 15 times

The prosecution says Tavis was killed in revenge for trouble that flared between two rival groups, one from the IP3 postcode area of Ipswich and another known as J-Block.

Adebayo Amusa, 20, of Barking, east London; Callum Plaats, 23, of Ipswich; Leon Glasgow, 42, of no fixed address; Isaac Calver, 19, of Ipswich; Mr Yenge, of no fixed abode, and the boy all deny murder.

The trial continues.

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