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Jack Woodley murder charged youths ‘like a herd of lions attacking a young boy’, court hears UK News

Teenagers accused of murder were described by an eyewitness as a “herd of lions attacking a young boy”.

Ten youths are charged with the murder of Jack Woodley in a joint attack involving punching, kicking, stabbing and stabbing. Prosecutors say the suspected murder mob attacked Jack, 18, from County Durham, in an unprovoked attack after the Houghton Feast fairground last October.

The defendants, aged 14 to 18 and who cannot be identified due to reporting restrictions, are on trial for murder, which they deny.

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In a statement read to jurors at Newcastle Crown Court, Gordon Rivers said he was at The Britannia Inn pub that evening, October 16. He said: “We were at the bar by the window and heard a bit of a commotion outside and noticed eight to ten customers heading for the windows to look outside.

“I looked outside too. I saw what I can only describe as a herd of lions attacking a young boy. He cowered behind a green BT box while five to seven guys threw punches at him and were kicking him.

“There were 40 to 50 guys crowding around. He had no chance of fighting back because there were too many of them.”

Mr Rivers said Jack managed to escape for ten to 20 seconds, but was followed by the suspected attackers. He said they then disappeared for a while before reappearing and running away.

He added: “I heard someone say he had collapsed. A blonde girl said he had been stabbed. I could see a wound but there didn’t seem to be too much blood.”

Mr Rivers’ partner Alison Snowdon, who is the pub manager, said she also saw ‘a young boy’ behind a green box ‘being hit and kicked from all angles’ by at least eight men. She said she then heard someone say he had collapsed and she followed her partner outside.

She said in a statement read to the court: “There must have been 60 people there. The girls were crying, screaming and cuddling. It was awful.

“I saw the same young boy lying on the ground in the recovery position with a woman.” Miss Snowdon said the woman was pressing on a wound on Jack’s back and she heard a blonde girl say he had been stabbed.

Pub patron Marie Davis said she walked out when she realized something was happening and added: ‘A young man seemed hurt. He was having trouble getting up.’

She said she grabbed one of her arms and a friend had her other arm. She added: “I bonded with him to help him up. However, his legs then gave out from under him and we helped lower him to the ground.

“At that time, what was wrong was not obvious.” Miss Davis said while checking for signs of injury she saw the teenager’s top was ‘soaked in blood’ and noticed what looked like a stab wound.

She added: “As he was trying to get up we stopped him standing so we could take care of him. I kept telling him ‘you’re fine, help is coming’.”

All ten youths deny murder, while one of them admitted manslaughter by stabbing Jack.

The trial continues.