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Murder trial told Christopher Harm was killed by his cousin

A MAN viciously stabbed his cousin to death in Brierley Hill when he exploded into violence after a "minor irritation" following a heavy drinking session between the two men, a jury has been told.

Glen Elvin was plainly the aggressor as his victim Christopher Harm made it clear he did not want to get involved in any violence and he was backing down in an incident caught on CCTV.

Michael Duck QC, prosecuting, alleged 26-year-old Elvin made a conscious decision to chase after Mr Harm with the knife before delivering a powerful single blow to his chest with the weapon.

Elvin, Mr Harm and two co-workers were in the Brierley Hill area to distribute advertising for a travelling circus and they had been drinking at The Waterfront.

Mr Harm and one of the other men had tried to calm Elvin down but when he got into a position where could strike a blow with the knife he lashed out, claimed Mr Duck.

The knife went straight into the chest of 28-year-old Mr Harm who had asked his angry cousin, "What are you doing? We are family."

Mr Duck alleged Elvin had clearly and deliberately targeted Mr Harm after they had argued while drinking at The Waterfront and he had lost his temper as they walked back to Engine Lane near the Merry Hill centre.

The five man-seven woman jury were shown CCTV which showed Mr Harm who had been pushed and shoved by Elvin trying to run away because he did not want any trouble.

The four men had travelled down from the North East in a Ford Transit van which contained the advertising material for the circus and they were also using the vehicle for accommodation.

There was a minor irritation between Elvin and Mr Harm and it escalated into a significant row as frustrations boiled over, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.

Elvin, alleged Mr Duck, then settled the dispute by producing the knife which he thrust into his cousin's chest causing a serious wound that resulted in his death.

There had earlier been banter between the two men and they had hugged each other leaving a colleague convinced the matter had ended but tragically he was "entirely wrong".

Elvin was the aggressor with Mr Harm showing no signs of wanting to retaliate and the CCTV footage shown to the jury showed he was trying to back away just seconds before he was killed.

But Elvin delivered the single blow with force and it was a blow from which Mr Harm was never going to recover, Mr Duck told the jury.

He maintained it was the intention of Elvin, who later disposed of the knife in undergrowth, to kill or at the very least cause extremely serious harm to his victim.

After his arrest Elvin told interviewing police officers that Mr Harm had gone at him with a piece of glass and he had been acting in self defence but that was wrong, stressed Mr Duck.

The jury were told the two men had grown up together and they reunited after some time apart with Elvin recommending Mr Harm for the job of advertising the circus.

Elvin, of no fixed address, has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Harm on October 13 last year and his trial, scheduled to last for a week, is continuing.