6th Mar, 2021

Defendant says 'Colton Bryan was my friend' after brutal stabbing, jury told

Harry Leach 27th Jan, 2021 Updated: 2nd Feb, 2021

NEIGHBOURS heard ‘screams of terror’ when Redditch man Colton Bryan was stabbed to death in his flat last year, a jury was told.

Colton Bryan, aged 22, was killed with a nine-inch hunting knife at his Guinness Close home on July 15.

Redditch men Faisal Fiaz, 21, of Millsbro Road and Adam Carpenter, 21, of Wharrington Hill are on trial with Mohammed Saddam Hussain, 25, of Oakfield Avenue, Birmingham for murder and conspiracy to rob – which they deny.

A Worcester Crown Court jury heard how a fourth man, Mohammed Hammad Hussain, Saddam’s brother, allegedly stabbed Mr Bryan before fleeing the country.

He was seen on CCTV at Birmingham Airport with Fiaz and Saddam who allegedly arranged a flight to Pakistan for his brother.

Prosecutors, wrapping up their case on Tuesday, said Hammad, Carpenter and Fiaz went to Mr Bryan’s flat to steal cash and drugs on the night of the murder.

Neighbour Veronica Beckford, who heard screams at 9.30pm, said she saw a ‘masked man’ in the hallway.

Inside Mr Bryan’s flat she saw ‘blood all over the walls’ and him lying on the floor.

Following his death, police interviewed Fiaz seven times.

At first he told detectives he wasn’t anywhere near the flat on July 15, but later admitted he was in Carpenter’s car, a white Skoda, when Carpenter and Hammad decided to ‘rob someone’.

In one of his final police statements, Fiaz said: “Adam asked me who we could rob in Redditch.

“He wanted to make money and go somewhere where there was a lot of stash.

“Hammad was sitting in the back of the car. Hammad said he would go inside Colton’s house, get his drugs, beat him up and leave.”

Fiaz told police he stayed in the car, parked a few roads away from Mr Bryan’s house, because he ‘wanted nothing to do with it’ as Mr Bryan was his ‘friend’.

Fiaz said when the pair returned later Hammad ‘had blood all over his T-shirt’.

“Hammad said to me: ‘look, I stabbed him four times – we need to go’.

“I asked him ‘what the f**k have you got me into now?’ – I didn’t know what to do – I didn’t know Hammad had a knife on him.”

But prosecutor Michael Burrows QC said Fiaz was lying about his involvement, telling the jury texts sent to Carpenter from Fiaz’s phone at around 9.20pm asked if Mr Bryan’s girlfriend ‘was in the house’ and ‘if the doors were open’.

When questioned by police about this, Fiaz said Hammad had used his phone to send those texts to Carpenter who had ‘gone ahead’ while Hammad was still in the car.

Later that night, the Skoda was seen on CCTV in a Birmingham car park.

Here the prosecution says the suspects discussed cleaning the blood-stained car and Hammad’s getaway.

Carpenter’s mum, Sue Nicklin, told the jury on Tuesday that she took her son to the police station the day after Mr Bryan’s death because he told her he was ‘in trouble’.

“He said he was at Colton’s flat when a big tall man in a mask came running in,” she said.

“I asked if he saw his face but he said no because he had ran away.

“I said he needs to tell the police and he agreed.”

Ms Nicklin said her son told her he needed to get away for the weekend after he was questioned and released by police.

She said he packed his bags and headed for Weston-super-Mare, where he was arrested a few days later.

Before his arrest, Ms Nicklin said her son had called her in hysterics telling her “they made me set it up, they made me set up the robbery”.

“Adam said they would kill him unless he leaves the country,” she said.

“I asked where his car was and he said two men had put a bag over his head, made him lie on the floor and taken his car.

“He told me one of them was the man who ran into the flat and killed Colton.”

The trial continues.

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