Man died after row at kebab shop

A TEENAGER has gone on trial accused of the murder of a family man at a kebab shop last summer. The youth, who cannot be named, was 15 at the time and is 16 now. He denies murdering 32-year-old scaffolder Gavin Noad on July 2. He also pleads not guilty to

A TEENAGER has gone on trial accused of the murder of a family man at a kebab shop last summer.

The youth, who cannot be named, was 15 at the time and is 16 now.

He denies murdering 32-year-old scaffolder Gavin Noad on July 2. He also pleads not guilty to the alternative charge of manslaughter.

Mr Noad, a father-of-two who lived in Peartree Way, Stevenage, was described in a statement by his partner Ann Smith as "happy go lucky" and devoted to his family.

Prosecutor Isabel Delamere told the jury on Tuesday: "On July 1 Mr Noad joined his friend Dave Green in The Fold pub in Shephall.

"They were very clearly drunk when they left the pub and went to the kebab shop at The Hyde. They could barely stand.

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"Two groups of youths also converged on the kebab shop. The defendant was in the first group and was standing in the doorway of the kebab shop when the two men came in.

"Mr Noad said something like 'who's got the weed then' and then said to the defendant: 'What about you pretty boy?'

"He got very close to his face and the youth pushed him back. Mr Noad swung a punch that missed, and the teenager punched back which sent the victim straight to the floor," said the prosecutor.

She said there was then a similar scene with Mr Green who also ended up on the floor.

The teenagers left and stood across the road, and the two men got up and seemed to be leaving when Mr Noad turned on another youth in the other group who were inside the shop.

"He was being aggressive and thoroughly unpleasant," said Miss Delamere.

"He threw a punch at the other youngster. The defendant said he was not having that and went back across the road and punched Mr Noad once under the jaw behind the ear. He fell flat to the floor."

She said the teenagers left and Mr Green was trying to help his friend who was making gurgling noises. Paramedics found no pulse. He was pronounced dead in hospital two hours later having suffered severe bleeding from the brain.

The teenager was arrested and said the second blow had not been a punch but a hit with the heel of his hand.

A pathologist said the fatal injury was consistent with a blow to the right side of the neck with a fist or hand rather than a solid object.

Miss Delamere said: "It is not suggested by the Crown that the youths did anything untoward and accept the two men were drunk, cantankerous and rude.

"But we say when he threw that final and fatal punch he had no reason to do so. Gavin Noad posed no threat to anybody.

"You have to decide if he did land the fatal blow and if so did he intend to kill or cause really serious harm.

"Alternatively if he did land the fatal blow knowing it would cause some harm then that would be manslaughter."

Case proceeding.

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