Date: 17 Sep 2017
Leon Pirdue was stabbed during a row at a house on 17 September 2017.
He was found dead by paramedics at about 7.15am. When the paramedics arrived that found Leon Pirdue on his back.
A 26-year-old woman, who was a shop manager, was tried for his murder but acquitted. Another man was arrested soon after the incident but was released without charge.
The woman said that she had no recollection of how Leon Pirdue came to be stabbed with a steak knife although she admitted to having had a row with him in their kitchen of her home beforehand. She said that Leon Pirdue had attacked her and knocked her unconscious and that when she awoke she found him lying on top of her.
However. it was also heard that the woman had gone into a nearby newsagents shortly the incident at about 7.05am to ask for help. The newsagent had said that the woman had come in to the shop with one sock on and no shoes holding an i-phone and with blood on her right hand. He said that the woman then asked him for his help and said something along the lines of, 'I need your help. I have injured someone, I think he is dead'. He noted that she was hysterical and in a bit of a state and that he could see that she had been crying. He said that he handed her his phone and that she then called for an ambulance.
It was also heard at the trial that the woman had confessed to a paramedic that she had killed Leon Pirdue and also said that she was going to prison.
At the trial it was heard however that a forensic expert who had examined the scene and the bloodstains had reported that blood patterns found contradicted the story that the woman had given of having woken up to find Leon Pirdue lying on top of her after he had attacked her. He said that he had analysed a 22.6cm long blood-stained knife along with Leon Pirdue’s blood-stained vest, t-shirt, jacket and jeans and said that he found a downward blood-pattern on the clothes which suggested that Leon Pirdue had been stabbed whilst he was upright and said that if Leon Pirdue had been lying on top of the woman that he would have expected blood transfer to the front of her dress which he noted only had blood staining on the back and on a cuff.
The forensic expert said, 'In my opinion with the information provided the transfer of blood from Leon Pirdue onto the front of the woman would be expected if he was injured and lying on top of her as she stated. If a person is lying on top of you, chest-to-chest, with blood stains on them you would expect the blood to transfer and the longer they are in that position the more likelihood the blood will transfer'.
He went on to say that when he examined Leon Pirdue's undamaged, open jacket he found that it only had blood stains inside. He went on to say that he found that Leon Pirdue's vest and t-shirt had stab type cuts and blood stains and that his jeans had downward-style spatters of blood spots almost like tear-drops. He then said, 'The t-shirt and vest of Leon Pirdue had blood and damage to the chest fitting the stab wound he suffered. There was no damage to the jacket supporting the fact the jacket was open to some degree at the time he was injured. There was some blood on the jacket but not heavy and it was on the inside-front and it had not soaked through to the other side. In my opinion, distribution of blood stain on the vest and t-shirt and the up-front left area of the jeans is in a downward direction supporting the initial injury of him being caused in an upright position'.
However, the forensic expert conceded that it was possible that Leon Pirdue's jacket had been closed at the time and had prevented blood from reaching the woman's dress.
The defence also suggested that Leon Pirdue might have been stabbed when he fell, but that he had then got up and that it was not possible to say what position he had been in when he stabbed but that when he had got up he had been bleeding whilst upright.
The woman had been at a birthday party earlier at Old Whittington Social Club and had taken some friends back home with her for an after-party. It was heard that Leon Pirdue had arrived later in the early hours and that Leon Pirdue and the woman had started arguing after he had accused her of spreading rumours about him cheating on his girlfriend.
She said that during the row that Leon Pirdue had punched her, struck with a bottle of vodka that caused her to fall and then kicked her, causing her to pass out, and that after she woke up she found Leon Pirdue on top of her.
When the judge summed up he asked the jury to consider whether the woman had acted in self-defence, whether she had stabbed him accidentally or whether someone else had stabbed Leon Pirdue.
The woman was aquitted on all chages, murder and manslaughter and released. She had spent nearly a year on remand. The trial had been postponed once due to the prosecuting barrister becoming ill.
Leon Pirdue had lived in Racecourse Road, Newbold, Chesterfield and had children.