A mum-of-three was stabbed in the chest by a 16-year-old drug user after he had given her his mobile phone to sell so he could buy more drugs, a murder trial jury heard this afternoon
Bradford Crown Court heard that the teenager, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, had become increasingly frustrated and angry with 23-year-old Paige Gibson after she failed to give him back his property or the money she got from selling it.
Prosecutor Nichola Campbell QC said Miss Gibson was stabbed in the chest while she was on the landing outside her flat at Weavers Brook in Cumberland Close, Ovenden, Halifax.
“The evidence is that before she was even carried away from that flat corridor all signs that she was alive had disappeared,” he told the jury.
“The prosecution case is that (the defendant) murdered Paige Gibson.
“He fled the scene. He did his best to cover his tracks. He was nevertheless arrested within an hour of the stabbing and you will hear that he has now admitted that he did stab her, but he denies murder.”
Mr Campbell said the teenager, who has pleaded not guilty to murdering Miss Paige in the early hours of June 7, had denied acting unlawfully in any way.
He told the jury that the background to the case was the world of drug-taking in Halifax and added:”You will hear how long before the stabbing lives had been ruined by the use of illicit drugs and you will need to hear about its effects on those at the centre of these activities.”
He described how the teenager regularly smoked cannabis and also used crack cocaine.
“His drug taking meant that he required money and getting it became a preoccupation and this, the prosecution say, is what led to the murder,” alleged Mr Campbell.
He said that night the teenager and others had been “chilling”, smoking weed, listening to music and watching television in the flat directly below the one occupied by Miss Paige and her partner.
Mr Campbell described the teenager as being “on edge” and said he and another friend went upstairs to Miss Gibson’s flat because they wanted money to buy drugs.
He said the accused was willing to sell his mobile phone and his friend wanted to sell a small tablet computer.
“You will hear that in due course Paige Gibson agreed to sell the items for them and so she left the flat and headed outside,” said Mr Campbell.
“You will hear that the boys didn’t trust her so they followed her.”
Miss Gibson and the boys eventually took a taxi together to Pellon, but she then went off on her own to sell the items.
“They waited for her return. She never did,” said Mr Campbell.
The boys went back to Weavers Brook and when Miss Gibson returned she was “clearly intoxicated by drink or drugs”.
Mr Campbell said the examination of her body after her death was to reveal that she was under the influence of both in a way that she had not been when she left Weavers Brook to sell those items of property.
“Once Miss Gibson was back inside number 35 the two boys were repeatedly coming to the door trying to get their money or, if not the money, then their property back.
“There were at least five such visits. On each occasion they were rebuffed. She told them she didn’t have their money. She would be able to get it but not just yet.
“It’s clear that (the defendant) was becoming increasingly frustrated and angry and on the last occasion that the boys had been to the front door of number 35 (his friend) will tell you that Paige Gibson pushed (the defendant) away from the door and shut it in his face.
“At which point (the defendant) pointed at the door and said these words ‘watch Paige, watch’.”
Mr Campbell will resume his opening of the case tomorrow morning (Wed) when he will describe how the teenager armed himself with a knife and how Miss Gibson came to be stabbed in the chest.
The trial continues.