One of the men accused of murdering a father-of-one in a savage beating has denied causing any of the alleged victim’s injuries.

Carlos Boyce suffered multiple head and facial injuries before he was left for dead inside a friend’s flat after a night of drinking and drug taking.

Lee Hogg has categorically denied taking part in the violence and said Mr Boyce had become embroiled in a fight with his friend Joseph Spencer.

He told jurors that the pair armed themselves with a variety of weapons, including a knife, a stick and a vodka bottle.

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The 38-year-old told Teesside Crown Court how he and his co-accused, Terry Dalton, left the flat while the other two men continued fighting.

The Northern Echo: Carlos BoyceCarlos Boyce (Image: Cleveland Police)

Peter Moulson KC, representing Hogg, asked his client what happened following the argument about smoking crack cocaine.

Giving evidence, Hogg said: “I jumped up with Terry to see what the bang was. Joe Spencer had a bottle in his hand and Carlos Boyce had something, like a stick. They were both just at it on the floor.

“Mr Boyce had a hoover pipe and he was trying to strike Joe with it. Mr Spencer had a vodka bottle in his hand, he was trying to strike Boyce with it.”

Mr Moulson asked the defendant if he had used any of the weapons on Mr Boyce, he replied: “Absolutely not.”

He asked Hogg: "Were you responsible for the murder of Carlos Boyce? He replied: “Definitely not.”

The defendant said he shared a number of messages with his partner and family, including one to one of his brother, saying: “I promise I done f*** all kid. They were wanting kill me.”

Another message to his partner read: "Emma I am wanted for murder. I am gone. See you in years."

The Northern Echo: The Comet, Hurworth, where the murder accused were caught on CCTV drinkingThe Comet, Hurworth, where the murder accused were caught on CCTV drinking (Image: Google)

Earlier in the trial, Mr Spencer had told jurors how he was beaten unconscious by Hogg and Dalton when he tried to stop them from punching, kicking and stamping on Mr Boyce in the early hours of November 11 last year.

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Jurors watched CCTV footage of the two defendants drinking in The Comet pub in Hurworth, near Darlington, before Hogg was arrested in Dalton on Tees when they were kicked out of the hotel for being too rowdy.

In body-worn camera footage from the arresting officer, Hogg denied having anything to do with the alleged murder. The court heard how the defendant initially gave a false name and date of birth before admitting his true identity saying: “I’ve done nowt man. I haven’t murdered anyone.”

Jurors heard the defendant deny he had searched for Jet 2 flights in the hours before he was arrested and charged with Mr Boyce's murder.

The trial continues.