Dad’s horrific wounds

The property where John Leatherbarrow was found fatally stabbed
The property where John Leatherbarrow was found fatally stabbed

A jury has heard full details of the horrific injuries which killed a father-of-one during a pathologist’s evidence at the trial of the man alleged to have murdered him.

John Leatherbarrow, 37, of Ulnes Walton, near Leyland, was found with fatal stab wounds at a flat in Westfield Drive, Leyland in December, last year.

The former Leyland St Mary’s Catholic Technology College pupil bled to death from his injuries, Preston Crown Court heard.

Barry Cookson, 41, of Westfield Drive, Leyland, is charged with his murder and is on trial.

He is accused of knifing him over a drugs debt.

Cookson, dressed in a dark jumper, sat calmly in the dock thumbing through superimposed pictures that were provided to explain the victim’s injuries to jurors as Home Office pathologist Dr Matthew Lyle gave evidence.

Prosecuting Dennis Watson led him through his findings which detailed three “incised wounds” found on Mr Leatherbarrow’s body during a post mortem examination.

Dr Lyle said: “A sharp knife is a typical example of an instrument that causes an incised wound.

He told the jury of eight men and four women he had found a wound to Mr Leatherbarrow’s buttock, and two more serious ones to his thigh and calf.

The court heard the gravest one was a “gaping stab wound” with a depth of around 7.5cm.

He said: “It ran between the tibula and fibula bones in a gap between them that contains blood vessels.”

He added the buttock wound was 1.2 centimetres in length and 3.7cm deep.

A wound to the thigh was four centimetres long and eight centimetres deep.

There were defence injuries to his hands and bruising to his head and scalp caused by a blunt object, he said.

Mr Watson told jurors the pathologist had been provided with possible weapons and asked if he had formed an opinion as to the likely one that caused the fatal injuries.

Dr Lyle replied it was likely a kitchen knife seized from the kitchen had been used but accepted a folding knife found in the lounge could have been responsible.

Cookson denies murder.