BREAKING: Murder trial verdicts

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A man is facing a life sentence after he was convicted of murdering 41-year-old Jonathan Binns at a flat in Scarborough.

Kevin Pickering was found guilty by an 11-1 majority of a jury at Leeds Crown Court today (Wednesday) of murder, having previously only admitted his manslaughter.

Three co-accused David White, Nicholas Polihronos and Jim Cousins were each found not guilty on the murder charge but convicted of the manslaughter of Mr Binns on August 7 last year.

The jury found White and Polihronos guilty of manslaughter by a 10-2 majority and Cousins by an 11-1 majority.

Mr Binns died after he was stabbed in the leg by Pickering while visiting a friend’s home in Eastborough.

The jury has heard during the trial that Pickering and his three co-accused had arrived at Gary Thomas’s flat shortly after Mr Binns took some heroin and one of their group White began punching him when he would not share what he had left.

Pickering claimed in evidence he intended only to scare Mr Binns into handing the drugs over when he picked up a kitchen knife, but the jury has heard when he stabbed him in the leg he hit the femoral artery causing him to bleed to death.

Pickering and White had already pleaded guilty to his robbery and today the jury unanimously convicted Cousins and Polihronos of the same robbery charge.

Mr Justice Dingemans first sent the jury out to consider the case on Tuesday afternoon.

They were sent home overnight when no verdicts had been reached and resumed deliberations around 11am today. At 3.30pm the jury were given majority directions by the judge.

Pickering, 30 of Queens Terrace, Scarborough, has not been in the dock during the jury’s deliberations after the court was told he was unwell. The judge ordered he be brought to court for sentencing tomorrow by separate transport from the others.

The jurors were told they can return to court if they want for the sentencing of White, 34 of Queens Terrace, Scarborough, Cousins, 31 of Woodlands Place, Manchester and Polihronos, 31 of Stoney Haggs Rise, Seamer, but excused them from further jury service.