A man accused of murder said he told people his alleged victim had “taken his own life” so he could avoid talking about her, a court heard.
Mark Brown, 41, of Squirrel Close in St Leonards, is charged with the murders of Leah Ware, 33, and Alexandra Morgan, 34, six months apart in 2021. He denies both charges.
The defense case of the trial opened at Hove Crown Court on Thursday morning, with the defendant Brown taking the witness stand for the first time.
When questioned by defense attorney Ian Henderson KC, Brown said he did not kill Ms Ware, orally raped her or “hurt a hair on her head”.
He denied having any control over her and said he didn’t know where Ms. Ware was.
Brown acknowledged he had given different people different accounts of where Ms Ware was after prosecutors claimed he killed her in May 2021.
While testifying, Brown said his relationship with Ms. Ware was “off” for most of 2021.
He told friends Ms Ware had been cut and is in Woodlands, a mental health facility, and told others she was “not with us anymore”.
Asked by Mr Henderson why he used the phrase “not with us anymore” when believing Ms Ware was alive, Brown said: “I think they assumed it was suicide and I didn’t want to think about it speak. I’m not very good with my feelings. I used the phrase so people wouldn’t keep asking questions.
“I wanted to talk to someone and it was just an easier way to talk without all the other things like substance abuse.”
Brown spoke of Ms Ware’s marijuana, crack cocaine and heroin habits. He said he bought her marijuana a couple of times but only once bought cocaine and heroin for her.
At that point, Brown broke down crying and said this happened “the day we lost the baby” – referring to a termination Ms Ware went through on February 21, 2020.
Brown and Ware used cocaine and heroin together “for the pain” that day.
The process goes on.
https://www.theargus.co.uk/news/23116479.mark-brown-takes-stand-hove-crown-court-murder-trial/?ref=rss Mark Brown comments on the murder trial at Hove Crown Court