Josh Hanson killing: Shane O’Brien tells murder trial Kingsbury victim was “possibly” armed
- Credit: Archant
An alleged murderer accused of slashing a Kingsbury man’s neck in a bar believed his victim was “possibly” armed after seeing him being “passed something shiny”, a court heard.
Shane O'Brien stabbed 21-year-old Josh Hanson in an act of "pitiless savagery" at RE Bar in Hillingdon, west London, in October 2015, before going on the run for three years, the Old Bailey has heard.
O'Brien, 31, has told his murder trial he felt threatened by Mr Hanson who he felt was "ready to attack me" and "making very aggressive body language, staring straight into my eyes".
In cross-examination, prosecutor Mark Heywood QC asked on Tuesday: "At the time did you see Mr Hanson with a weapon?"
O'Brien replied: "I didn't see him obviously with a weapon.
You may also want to watch:
"He possibly could have had a weapon and I had seen him passed something shiny.
"In my mind when I went up to approach him I felt under threat and possibly he could have had a weapon."
- 1 Vigil held in Barn Hill for murdered sisters Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman
- 2 Two men charged with murder in connection with missing pensioner with links to Willesden
- 3 Missing 12-year-old boy from Kilburn found 'safe and well'
- 4 Childhood friends launch their first Their Story Film Festival in Kilburn
- 5 'Residents are going through hell as a result of flooding'
- 6 QPR boss Warburton excited for competitive football to return with fans
- 7 Loaded shotgun seized in Harlesden as police crack down on gang activity
- 8 Officer's leg broken after e-scooter rider fails to stop, say police
- 9 'Brave new streets of London' – photo collection captures a city under Covid
- 10 Landlord faces jail if he tries to evict Kilburn tenants
CCTV images played in court showed the moment Mr Hanson arrived at the bar at around 12.45am on October 11, with footage also showing the pair first passing each other several minutes later.
O'Brien has said they were not aware of each other at that point, but said after he and his three friends sat down it became apparent "they wasn't happy with us sitting at that table" and that "the situation seemed hostile".
Jurors have seen video showing the moment O'Brien slashed the council worker in front of his girlfriend shortly after 1am after the bar lights came on for closing time, inflicting a 37cm wound from his left ear to right chest.
As footage around three minutes before the attack was played, Mr Heywood asks: "There is no hostility is there? Where was the hostility at this stage?"
O'Brien said: "That bar is very small. Just body language can create an atmosphere."
Mr Heywood said: "It can if you're looking for it, Mr O'Brien."
O'Brien has told the court he wanted to "pretend to attack" Mr Hanson with a knife bought from B&Q earlier that day to "scare him", adding: "From the bottom of my heart I did not mean to touch him with that blade."
Jurors have heard O'Brien accepts he used the blade to cause Mr Hanson's death but says he is not "criminally responsible" because he did not mean to kill him.
The trial continues.