Paul Retallick murder trial: Court is told of conflicting accounts given by accused
A father and son accused of murder gave police two different versions of events leading up to Paul Retallick’s death, Bristol Crown Court heard.
Michael Frank McGinty, 55, and Lee McGinty, 25, both of Peony Way, Langport, both deny the murder of Paul Retallick, 35, formerly of Barwick, near Yeovil.
In the second week of their trial at Bristol Crown Court, details of interviews the defendants gave to police in the days following Mr Retallick’s death were revealed.
Michael McGinty told officers that on the night of his death, Mr Retallick was in a closed wardrobe in the bedroom of his daughter’s home when his son called him upstairs. He initially could not remember if Mr Retallick came out of his own accord but had a “vision” that he was pulled out by the defendants.
A struggle ensued before they managed to get the victim lying face-down on the bedroom floor with Michael McGinty sitting on his back, holding his arms in a “hand-lock.”
Michael McGinty said he told his son to call the police but Lee McGinty had barely gone a few steps down the stairs before his father started to lose his grip and called him back. This was when Lee appeared to lose control and stamped, kicked and punched Mr Retallick like a “kung-fu artist” until Michael McGinty managed to stop him, according to a transcript of his police interview read out in court.
He said he tried to protect the victim and intercepted a number of blows Lee was throwing with his fists and legs.
However, in a statement to police two days after the incident, Lee McGinty said Mr Retallick was already out of the wardrobe when his father came to his aid.
Lee McGinty initially responded with “no comment” when questioned about the attack by officers on Monday, September 17, last year, but his legal representative submitted a statement the following day.
In it he recognised there were inconsistencies between his version of events and that of his father and sister.
Lee McGinty went upstairs assuming Mr Retallick was still in his sister’s house and found him hiding in a cupboard. He said his intention was to restrain the victim until police arrived so they could arrest him.
“I tried to get him down by punching him in the face, head or body but he wouldn’t go down. I think his nose was broken at this stage because he was bleeding profusely,” his statement said.
He said he called for his dad who helped him get Mr Retallick on the floor.
During the struggle that followed, Lee McGinty described how he punched and kicked the victim who at one point managed to lift his legs and twist Michael McGinty’s arms back.
But Michael McGinty told officers the claim was lies. The trial was due to conclude yesterday.