Murder victim’s clothing contained DNA likely to come from his accused killer, court hears

PUBLISHED: 23:46 26 February 2018 | UPDATED: 23:46 26 February 2018

Peter Wrighton. Picture: Norfolk Constabulary

Peter Wrighton. Picture: Norfolk Constabulary


Clothing worn by an 83-year-old man found murdered in Norfolk woodlands contained DNA likely to have come from his accused killer, a court heard.

Police conduct checks near the scene of the murder of Peter Wrighton.
 Picture: Nick ButcherPolice conduct checks near the scene of the murder of Peter Wrighton. Picture: Nick Butcher

Peter Wrighton, from Banham, died after a frenzied knife attack in East Harling on August 5 last year.

Alexander Palmer, 24, of Freesia Way, Cringleford, is on trial in Nottingham Crown Court after being charged with Mr Wrighton’s murder.

On day five of the trial documents showed that a mixed DNA profile was recovered from Mr Wright’s trousers, which showed two major contributors and that of one other person.

It said the majority of the DNA belonged to Mr Wright but the DNA profile of Palmer matches the sample in such a way that, in the opinion of a forensic scientist, he could be the other major contributor.

Alexander Palmer. Picture: Facebook.Alexander Palmer. Picture: Facebook.

Samples were also taken from a grey jacket belonging to Palmer, in which the defendant’s and Mr Wright’s DNA were represented in a way that they could be major contributors to it.

Prosecutor Chris Youell said the crown is not suggesting the jacket had been worn by Palmer at the time of the attack, and that is likely to have been secondary transfer.

The trial also heard how police recovered a notebook belonging to Palmer in which he made a number of handwritten notes.

The notebook, found in a lock up storage facility Palmer hired from June 30, included notes referring to Palmer’s dislike of people, killing people, knives and stabbing and/or slashing throat as a method of killing.

Nottingham Crown Court where the East Harling Murder Trial is taking place. Picture Peter Walsh.Nottingham Crown Court where the East Harling Murder Trial is taking place. Picture Peter Walsh.

One note, read out in court, said: “A man/woman? Whichever is first!

“Cut the throat, no hit over the head first, will be easier… Eyes out to stop the ******* staring!

“I’m nearly ready. All this pain and hatred has been building up inside for so long! I can’t stop it now it’s getting hard.

“Our aim is simple. Fear to see the absolute fear in some ones eyes is the one accomplishment I wish in this life. For one day soon I am nearly ready.”

Mr Youell added that there were no dates written in the notes.

Defence barrister David Spens QC also told judge Mr Justice Goose that Palmer has decided not to stand in the witness box.

Closing speeches from both the prosecution and defence are likely to take place tomorrow (Tuesday, February 27).

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