A MAN who killed an acquaintance following a vicious drug-fuelled row has been found guilty of murder.

Robert Askew repeatedly stabbed David Teague with a rusty machete and a kitchen knife over several hours on April 24, this year.

The incident happened inside Askew’s home in Wood View, Esh Winning, where the two men had gone with Mr Teague’s partner’s daughter Chloe Richardson.

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All three, along with the two men’s girlfriends, had been drinking alcohol and taking drugs in the hours prior to the fatal attack.

Miss Richardson was held captive and tried not to watch as Mr Teague was repeatedly stabbed and punched, kicked or stamped by Askew.

She was also stabbed in the leg during the ordeal, which only ended when two of Askew's friends visited the house and one called emergency services.

Despite attempts to save Mr Teague, 33, from Stockton, he died at the scene as a result of significant blood loss, a collapsed lung and inhaled vomit.

During the trial, at Newcastle Crown Court, Askew had claimed that in the hours leading up the attack, the two men had been getting along fine until Mr Teague “went funny”.

He said Mr Teague, originally from Stockton, had been asking about money and cannabis he had in the house and he believed the victim was trying to “tax him”.

Askew claimed he had told Mr Teague to “just leave, leave, leave” before he picked up the machete.

He could not recall when the incident turned from self-defence to a loss of control, saying he had lashed out and “it just got out of hand”.

In her summing up for the jury, Judge Alison Cousins DBE, said he had shown remorse and taken express responsibility for inflicting the fatal injuries, adding: “He said he was sorry to David Teague, his family and to his own family.”

The jury heard that Askew, 35, had a history of significant behavioural problems from childhood when he was expelled from several schools.

Though he had worked for his dad’s construction company he was unemployed at the time of the killing and the court heard he had a history of getting into fights.

He had suffered mental issues and been admitted to hospital three times following episodes of drug-induced violent psychosis.

The jury heard it was possible he had dissocial personality disorder and was suffering PTSD related to a number of assaults he had been subjected to, most recently in September 2020 when he was hit with a hammer and stabbed in the face with a screwdriver.

The defence argued the defendant could not be held responsible for murder by law, due to his diminished responsibility.

But the prosecution said it was because Askew had voluntarily consumed drugs, particularly amphetamine, that he killed Mr Teague and that he was “well aware” of how he acted after taking amphetamine.

Reaching a unanimous verdict, the jury found Askew guilty of murdering Mr Teague and guilty of false imprisonment and assault occassioning actual bodily harm against Miss Richardson.

He will be sentenced on November 10.

Detective Chief Inspector Nicola Lawrence, who led the investigation, said: “Although nothing can bring David back, I hope this verdict will provide some comfort to David’s family and friends, knowing that justice has been served.

“This was a tragic and a completely unnecessary loss of life."


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