Son will not give evidence in Bury murder trial

Winsford Road in Bury St Edmunds where Neil Charles was fatally wounded

Edward King has chosen not to give evidence in the trial - Credit: Archant/Supplied

A 19-year-old man accused of murdering a thief alongside his father in a "vigilante" killing in Bury St Edmunds will not give evidence during the trial, a jury has heard.    

Edward King and his father, David King, 55, both of Radnor Close, Bury, have denied murdering Neil Charles on June 20 last year, and an alternative charge of manslaughter.    

It has been alleged that the pair hunted down Mr Charles, 47, and stabbed him in the chest after he tried the door handles of cars parked at their home on Bury's Moreton Hall estate. 

Following the conclusion of David King's defence case, Richard Christie QC, for Edward King, then told the court that his client would not give evidence.    

Closing speeches will follow from the prosecution and defence before Judge Martyn Levett will sum up the case to jurors.    

The jury is expected to start deliberations next week.    

On Wednesday, Jason Bartfeld QC, representing David King, read a number of witness statements describing the character of the father-of-two.    

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David King was described as an "honest, hardworking and approachable family man” who respected authority.  

Former work colleagues described him as “level-headed, measured and calm” and said he was held in “very high esteem”.

A forensics officer takes photographs of a bike that the police had covered up at the the scene of a

A forensics officer takes photographs of a bike that the police had covered up in Winsford Road in Bury St Edmunds. - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY

During his four days of giving evidence from the witness box, David King claimed Mr Charles ran onto a military knife he was holding in his outstretched hand.

Cross-examined by prosecution counsel Christopher Paxton QC, Edward King denied that his failure to mention the fact that Edward had left their house with a sword was part of him “spinning lies” about what happened on the night in question

Mr Paxton previously claimed the father and son delivered their "own form of justice" on Mr Charles in the early hours of the morning around 70 metres from their family home.  

Mr Charles suffered a 12cm single stab wound to the chest and a slash wound to his knee, and died two days later.  

Police at the the scene of a stabbing in Winsford Road, Bury St Edmunds

Police at the the scene of a stabbing in Winsford Road, Bury St Edmunds - Credit: Denise Bradley

Mr Paxton said Mr Charles had a "long career" as a thief and burglar and the prosecution accepted he was out that night stealing or looking to steal.   

Mr Paxton claimed the defendants had an "obsession" with weapons and at their home had knives, knuckledusters, machetes, and shotguns - which David King had licences for as a registered firearms holder.