Jury told how barmaid was attacked

PUBLISHED: 18:15 15 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:40 03 March 2010

A BAKER heard a human yelp and others heard a woman's scream on the night an Ipswich barmaid was found with fatal injuries outside the pub where she worked, a jury heard today.

A BAKER heard a human yelp and others heard a woman's scream on the night an Ipswich barmaid was found with fatal injuries outside the pub where she worked, a jury has been told.

Janet Fleming died two days after she was found outside Harleys pub on Stoke Park Drive on December 10 last year.

"She was in a very bad state. Her heart had stopped beating," said Elizabeth Marsh, QC, prosecuting at Norwich Crown Court yesterday. "She was resuscitated and taken by ambulance to hospital where she was placed on a life support system."

A jury of three women and nine men heard how Miss Fleming, 38, had just left her Sunday shift for home when the pub's temporary landlord, Andrew Hull, "became aware of a noise".

Walking along the side of Harleys to see what the sound was, he was "confronted by two men running towards him".

The masked men pushed him through the pubs doors, threatening him as they demanded money, Miss Marsh told the court.

Mr Hull was hit by a hard blow which dazed him and was forced to open the pub's safe, she told the court.

One of the robbers took cash from the safe while the other pointed a gun at Mr Hull and ordered him to lie on the floor.

Miss Marsh said the armed robber was 21 year-old Ipswich man Damien Duberry, of Morland Road. The other robber was Leon Sobers, 23, of Birkfield Drive, Ipswich, she said.

During the raid, Mr Hull became aware that one of the men had left the pub, before returning and shutting him in the safe cupboard. Mr Hull later managed to escape and phone police, Miss Marsh said.

"Miss Fleming no doubt would have been making her way home at that time of night."

She didn't make it home, Miss Marsh told the court.

Her fatally injured body was later found near a wall outside Harleys.

The court heard how a baker in a nearby shop saw a masked man stamping on something on the ground near a wall between 11.15pm and 11.30pm that night.

"He heard a noise and didn't know what it was, he thought it may have been a yelp, a sort of human yelp," Miss Marsh told the court.

The baker saw a man stamping repeatedly on something behind the wall.

"He stamped about six times. Then jumped on whatever it was, both legs raised, landing on whatever it was he had been attending to on the other side of the wall," Miss Marsh said.

"The man was wearing a mask and that man went back into Harleys public house."

The baker did not know at the time that he was witnessing an attack on Miss Fleming, Miss Marsh said.

At around 11.15pm that night a couple heard a woman scream and a man shout. Another person heard a woman shout three times: "Please don't hurt me."

"We say that was Janet Fleming. We say her attacker was Mr Duberry," Miss Marsh told the court.

The jury heard that Miss Fleming's heart stopped as a result of the beating and she was revived by paramedics outside the pub. But after two days in intensive care, her life support machine was switched off.

Miss Marsh said Duberry and Sobers went to a friend's home in Ipswich after the robbery.

Sobers told a female friend to count some money and gave her £100 and asked her to buy some crack cocaine. The two men smoked the drug with friends.

Miss Marsh told the jury that the friend later told police Sobers and Duberry arrived sweating and claimed they had been in a car accident, but neither of them told her where the money came from.

The court heard Peter Robinson, a friend of Sobers and Duberry, was given a tape recorder by police to record a conversation with Duberry in January this year relating to the night of the murder.

Duberry is alleged to have said: "I'm telling you they can't even convict me from DNA."

The court heard that DNA analysis of a lock knife found in the pub matched that of Sobers.

Miss Marsh told the jury that the likelihood of someone having the same match was one in 14 million.

Fibres from clothes worn by Sobers and Duberry link both men to the pub and the murder of Miss Fleming and the robbing of Mr Hull, the Crown allege.

When both men were arrested in January this year, both denied any involvement.

Sobers told police: "I didn't kill Janet Fleming and I did not take part in the robbery."

Duberry said: "I don't know what you are talking about."

Sobers and Duberry deny murdering Janet Fleming and deny robbing Andrew Hull of £2,845.74 and a bracelet.

The trial continues.

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