‘I don’t want anyone dead’ says accused

Police officers at the scene of the shooting in Accrington
Police officers at the scene of the shooting in Accrington
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A truck driver accused of plotting to murder a love rival in a shooting over access to his estranged daughter told police “I don’t want anyone dead.”

Kevin King, 30, denies conspiracy to murder Mark Walsh after Mr Walsh was peppered with hundreds of pellets from a 12-bore shotgun in an alleyway behind his house in Maudsley Street, Accrington.

He’s an idiot. He probably wants to be my little girl’s dad

King, of Lodge Lane, Lytham, was delivering coal to Southampton at the time Mr Walsh was shot, the court heard.

But after Jack Wilding, a homeless man, told police he had been involved in the shooting, along with King’s friend Donovan Wallace, 26, King was interviewed again.

He told officers: “I wouldn’t ask them to do anything of that level. That is way out of my league.

“I have not got an issue with Mark Walsh and I have not got an issue with (my ex). I’ve got a new missus now.”

King said he knew of Mark Walsh as he had set up home with King’s ex-partner and daughter.

In the aftermath of the shooting, Mr Walsh identified King as the gunman.

When asked by the police if there was any reason Mr Walsh would point the finger at him, King replied: “He probably wants to play the big one to her or play daddy to my little girl.

“He’s an idiot.

“He probably wants to be my little girl’s dad but on paper that’s something that’s never going to happen.

“He might have looked after her for a couple of years.”

Preston Crown Court heard a court hearing over access rights had been scheduled in the days following the shooting of Mr Walsh on January 12.

But during a police interview King said: “I’m not going to threaten anybody to go to court or not go to court.

“They have been issued with papers that have cost me money.”

The prosecution allege Wallace was the gunman and Wilding had travelled to the scene with him in the Vauxhall Vectra Wallace and King shared.

It is alleged they were acting on orders from King, but King told police: “I’ve not instructed them. I don’t need to instruct them. That’s why I do things myself. That’s why I’m taking them (Walsh and his ex-partner) to court.

“I don’t want anybody shot or anybody dead or anybody in a hospital bed.

“I wouldn’t like it to happen to myself or my partner.”

Wallace, also of Lodge Lane, Lytham, and Wilding, of no fixed address, deny attempted murder. All three men deny conspiracy to murder.

(Proceeding)