Murder accused ‘had balaclava for bike rides’

Jon-jo Highton
Jon-jo Highton
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One of the men accused of murdering Preston teen Jon-Jo Highton says he had a balaclava in a bedside cabinet in his flat to cover his face when he rode a motorbike on the park.

Craig Walton has been giving evidence for three days at Preston Crown Court after changing his story and admitting he was the driver of one of the vehicles which carried five men to the scene of the attack.

I used to use it when I used to go on the motorbike at the weekend. It’s to cover my face up when I’m driving my motorbike round the streets or on the park to hide it was me

However he maintains he had no idea there was going to be any violence.

When police search the flat in Watling Street Road after the murder, they discovered a black balaclava bearing Walton’s DNA.

Walton told the court: “I used to use it when I used to go on the motorbike at the weekend. It’s to cover my face up when I’m driving my motorbike round the streets or on the park to hide it was me.

Owen Whitesmith, 19, of Glebe Close Fulwood; Arron Graham, 23, Ripon Street, Preston; Stephen Walton, 24, of no fixed address; Craig Walton, 26, of Watling Street Road, Fulwood; Joshua Bore, 19, of Morris Road, Ribbleton; Zaahid Patel, 20, of Park Avenue, Preston; Mohammed Sabbah Dal, 20, of Alice Square, Preston; and Minhaj Musa, 21, of Deepdale Road, Preston all deny murder.

Liam Tunstall, 26, of Mark Close, Penwortham; John Wilding, 36, of Everton Street, Darwen and Stuart Eastham, 32, Gisburn Road, Ribbleton deny assisting an offender.