British veteran's Troubles shooting trial halted as he catches Covid

Asia's Tech News Daily

© Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo

The trial of Army veteran Dennis Hutchings over a Troubles shooting has been halted after he contracted Covid-19.

Mr Hutchings, 80, a former member of the Life Guards regiment, is due to return to court in three weeks over the attempted murder of John Pat Cunningham in Co Tyrone in 1974. 

Mr Cunningham, 27, was shot dead as he ran away from an Army patrol across a field near Benburb. People who knew him said he had the mental age of a child and was known to have a deep fear of soldiers. 

Mr Hutchings has previously said he does not accept he fired any shots as he pleaded not guilty to the attempted murder charge and a count of attempted grievous bodily harm with intent. 

Defence barrister James Lewis QC today informed Belfast Crown that Mr Hutchings had caught Covid-19 as proceedings in the non-jury trial were due to commence on Monday. 

He told judge Mr Justice O’Hara that the veteran’s condition had been confirmed by a PCR test on Saturday. 

© Provided by Daily Mail (

‘I regret Mr Hutchings is not well with regard, as one would expect, with his other co-morbidities of renal failure and cardiac malfunction. And we are unable to presently take instructions as he is currently in isolation in his hotel room.’

Mr Justice O’Hara adjourned the trial until November 8.

Mr Hutchings has previously pleaded not guilty to the attempted murder charge and also denies a count of attempted grievous bodily harm with intent.  

The veteran is suffering from kidney disease and the court has been sitting only three days a week to enable him to undergo dialysis treatment between hearings.   

Adjourning the case, Mr Justice O’Hara, told the court on Monday: ‘The optimism from last Monday about finishing the trial this week has faded away.

‘We lost a bit of time on Wednesday, then we lost Friday entirely because of Mr Hutchings’ cardiac problems.

‘Things have obviously deteriorated over the weekend with his positive test for Covid. It is simply not possible to continue the trial in his absence.’

The judge added: ‘I therefore adjourn the case. It will not be possible to sit again this week. It will not be possible to resume the trial until Monday November 8.

‘We will then resume in the hope that we would finish over the next two weeks that follow. I would like to be kept abreast of Mr Hutchings’ recovery just to confirm we are on track for the target date of November 8.’

The trial has heard that Mr Hutchings does not accept he fired any shots as he denied the charges of attempted murder of Mr Cunningham, who was fatally shot as he ran away from an Army patrol in a field near Benburb in 1974.  

The court heard that Mr Cunningham had been involved in a similar incident with an Army patrol in the same area a year earlier, when soldiers tried to detain him after finding him hiding in bushes ‘acting suspiciously’.      

The court heard he was released when a passing local doctor intervened and explained Mr Cunningham was his patient and he had learning difficulties and was innocent of any wrongdoing.

In relation to the fatal shooting a year later, on June 15, 1974, a defence barrister said Hutchings accepted he was in the field where the incident happened but nothing else.

© Provided by Daily Mail (

James Lewis QC also insisted there was no evidence before the court that proved an unnamed soldier referred to in witness statements given by other soldiers following the shooting was the defendant.

On the opening day of the trial earlier this month, the prosecution contended the individual referred to as soldier A in the statements was Hutchings.

Mr Lewis told judge Mr Justice O’Hara that the defence did not accept the identities of the two soldiers said to have fired five shots at Mr Cunningham – soldiers A and B – had been proved.

‘Nothing in the papers before your lordship identifies who soldiers A or B are,’ he said.

Prosecution barrister Charles McCreanor QC indicated the Crown would seek to introduce evidence at a later stage in the trial that proved the identity of soldier A.

The prosecution has said soldier B is deceased.

Hutchings, from Cawsand in Cornwall, wearing a jacket with military medals pinned to the left breast, sat in the dock during the second day of the trial and listened to proceedings through a headset.

Judge O’Hara later questioned Mr Lewis on the extent of Hutchings’s admissions.

He referenced a defence statement submitted ahead of the trial which stated that on the issue of whether the defendant fired ‘aimed shots’ at Mr Cunningham, the defence would argue Hutchings only fired ‘warning shots’ in order to make him ‘comply with a lawful order to halt’.

Responding, Mr Lewis explained that would only be the defence position if the prosecution could establish Hutchings had a case to answer. He said it was for the prosecution to prove Hutchings fired any shots.

‘The fact he was in the field is not contested, anything more than that is contested,’ said the barrister.

There was a sharp exchange during this legal discussion, when Justice O’Hara accused Mr Lewis of talking over him, telling the lawyer that was not how he expected proceedings to be conducted in Northern Ireland. Mr Lewis apologised.

In the Crown’s opening statement, the prosecution said as no bullets had been recovered from the scene it was not possible to prove which soldier fired the fatal shot that hit Mr Cunningham in the back. For that reason, the Crown said, Hutchings was facing a charge of attempted murder.

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related

OTHER NEWS

Australia foreign minister welcomes EU security pledge

The Associated PressAustralian Foreign Minister Marise Payne makes statements after a meeting with her Greek counterpart Nikos Dendias, right, in Athens, Greece, Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2021. The foreign minister of ... Read more »

Police arrest 13-year-old after second threat on Maple Valley Schools this week

VERMONTVILLE — A 13-year-old student from Barry County is in police custody after a threat of violence was made against Maple Valley High School in Vermontville on social media, the ... Read more »

Knife-killer caught by his mother's dashcam told to serve at least 25 years

A murderer who recruited his mother to help cover his tracks after strangling, smothering and stabbing his partner has been jailed for life with a minimum term of 25 years. ... Read more »

Johnson apologises and Allegra Stratton quits as probe launched into No 10 party

Boris Johnson has apologised and a senior aide has quit over footage showing Number 10 advisers joking about a Downing Street Christmas party during the coronavirus lockdown. The Prime Minister ... Read more »

Dogs attack and kill 61-year-old woman outside relative's home, Missouri sheriff says

A 61-year-old woman was heading to a relative’s home when dogs attacked her, Missouri officials say. The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office was called to a rural property outside of St. ... Read more »

The best cheap gaming chair deals in December 2021

© Provided by GamesRadar Best cheap gaming chair deals: November 2021 The best cheap gaming chair deals can help offset the costs of purchasing one of the best gaming chairs ... Read more »

Allegra Stratton's resignation statement in full

Allegra Stratton outside her Islington home today after the Downing Street Christmas party furore – Tim Clarke for The Telegraph Allegra Stratton has quit her role as the Prime Minister's ... Read more »

Armed burglars assault Olympic cyclist Mark Cavendish and threaten his wife

Tour de France and Olympic cyclist Mark Cavendish said his family are “extremely distressed” after a group of armed burglars assaulted him and threatened his wife in a raid while ... Read more »

Half of likely voters have ‘very unfavorable' opinion of Kamala Harris: poll

A new survey shows Vice President Kamala Harris’ approval rating continuing to plummet following the departure of two key members of her staff and amid renewed scrutiny of her management ... Read more »

Ghislaine Maxwell and Epstein pictured inside Queen's log cabin at Balmoral after being invited there by Prince Andrew

A PICTURE of Ghislaine Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein relaxing in the Queen's log cabin at Balmoral has been shown at her trial. The never-before-seen image shows the pair at Her ... Read more »

Prosecutor: 'Overwhelming' evidence Smollett faked attack

CHICAGO (AP) — A prosecutor told jurors Wednesday that there is “overwhelming evidence” that former “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett staged a racist, anti-gay attack against himself in downtown Chicago for ... Read more »

I'm A Celebrity in new fix row after Snoochie Shy is kicked out – and Naughty Boy survives again

I'M a Celebrity was hit with fresh fix claims last night after Snoochie Shy was eliminated – and Naughty Boy survived again. Radio 1Xtra DJ Snoochie, 29, became the third ... Read more »

Dad who killed family over fake Covid pass was member of anti-vaxx ‘Querdenker' cult who compared vaccines to Holocaust

A DAD who killed his wife and three kids over a fake Covid pass was a member of anti-vaxx group who compared jabs to the Holocaust. German police are investigating ... Read more »

Gauteng EMS bolstered ahead of the festive season

© Provided by eNCA JOHANNESBURG – Gauteng Emergency Services said it has been bolstered ahead of the festive season with the launch of a new fleet and additional staff to attend ... Read more »

The Giants have broken Carl Banks: ‘Figure it the f–k out'

After Sunday’s 20-9 loss to the Dolphins, in which the Giants failed to execute offensively and fell to 4-8 on the season, Carl Banks had a message for the team. ... Read more »

How to complete Planetary Nomad in No Man's Sky Expedition 2: Beachhead/Normandy

© Provided by GamePur Planetary Nomad is the first Milestone in No Man’s Sky Expedition 2: Beachhead/Normandy. When we started this Expedition, we spawned on an extreme world where storms ... Read more »

High Court convicts four minors for Thoriso Themane's murder

© Kayleen Morgan/EWN Thoriso Themane’s casket placed in a horse-drawn glass hearse before moving to the cemetery. JOHANNESBURG – The High Court in Polokwane on Wednesday found four youngsters guilty ... Read more »

Fortnite moves to Unreal Engine 5 with launch of Chapter 3

© Provided by Dot Esports With the arrival of Fortnite’s Chapter Three, the game’s development has “flipped” to Unreal Engine 5, the official Unreal Engine Twitter account revealed yesterday. Unreal ... Read more »

Call of Duty: Warzone Pacific is now live, featuring the new map Caldera

© Provided by Dot Esports Call of Duty: Warzone’s massive Pacific update, and the new map Caldera, are now live in-game on all platforms for those who own Call of ... Read more »

Blackhawks' Jujhar Khaira released from hospital after scary Jacob Trouba hit

Following Jacob Trouba’s hit Wednesday night that resulted in Jujhar Khaira being stretchered off the ice, the Blackhawks announced that Khaira was released from the hospital on Wednesday morning. In ... Read more »

Top 5 Plant-based braai tips

© Provided by Independent Online (IOL) Are you interested in hosting a plant-based braai? Maybe you’ve started trying plant-based recipes and want to move over to a traditional way of ... Read more »

New Splinter Cell game is reportedly open-world like Halo Infinite

© Provided by GamePur It’s been along time since we’ve been graced with a new Splinter Cell game — not since 2013’s Blacklist, in fact. But a new report from ... Read more »

Looking straight ahead, Merkel leaves office

© John MACDOUGALL Angela Merkel was present for key moments as new Chancellor Olaf Scholz took over With the same stoicism that had marked Angela Merkel’s 16 years in office, ... Read more »

Instagram boss faces US lawmakers over impact on kids

© Matt Winkelmeyer Instagram head Adam Mosseri goes before US lawmakers for a grilling on the app’s impact on kids Instagram’s boss faces a grilling Wednesday from US lawmakers after ... Read more »

How to unlock Abbey Lime weapon coating in Halo Infinite

© Provided by GamePur In Halo Infinite, you can complete various weekly and daily challenges to earn XP in order to level up in the Battle Pass to earn a ... Read more »

CBI opposes bail plea of Christian Michel James in AgustaWestland case in Delhi High Court

The CBI Wednesday opposed in the Delhi High Court the bail plea of alleged middleman Christian Michel James in connection with the AgustaWestland scam, saying there was evidence to show ... Read more »

Ex-Montana police chief admits distributing child porn using Facebook

Harrington faces a mandatory minimum of five to 20 years in prison and a lifetime of supervised release. Missoula County A former Montana police chief admitted to using Facebook to ... Read more »

Drug hoarding case: Nothing to suggest persons seeking assistance from Gautam Gambhir, Delhi Drug Control Dept tells HC

The Delhi Drug Control Department has told the Delhi High Court that BJP MP Gautam Gambhir and his foundation should not have illegally purchased, stocked, and distributed COVID-19 drugs without ... Read more »

New CDC report finds increase in autism, with 1 in 44 8-year-olds diagnosed

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – JUNE 22: Young children dance with their umbrellas at the launch of an art installation called the Umbrella Project, featuring 200 brightly coloured umbrellas suspended over Church ... Read more »

Lorraine Kelly: Princess Royal made CBE ceremony extra special

Lorraine Kelly swapped the television studio for more regal surrounds as she was honoured at Windsor Castle for her career and charity work. Kelly, a staple on breakfast TV for ... Read more »

«Counter-Strike»-Legende kämpft jetzt im MMA-Käfig

Diashow ein E-Sport Legende Jaroslaw «pashaBiceps» Jarzabkowski (rechts) gibt sein MMA-Debut. Nächstes Jahr kämpft er gegen Michal «Owca» Owczarzak. «pashaBiceps» ist einer der bekanntesten und beliebtesten «Counter-Strike»-Spieler. So gewann er ... Read more »

Trotz 2 Siegen in 11 Partien – Wagner will den Sieg gegen Manchester United

YB fordert am Mittwochabend die Red Devils. Wollen die Berner im Frühling Europa League spielen, braucht es im Old Trafford einen Sieg – und Schützenhilfe von Villarreal gegen Atalanta. Coach ... Read more »

Super League bis Ende Jahr ohne Gästefans

© KEYSTONE/MICHAEL BUHOLZER In den beiden höchsten Schweizer Fussball-Ligen werden zumindest bis Ende Jahr die Gästesektoren geschlossen. Dies beschloss das Komitee der Swiss Football League (SFL) angesichts der angespannten Corona-Lage ... Read more »

French junior finance minister resigns after conviction

FILE – Alain Griset, who worked in the Finance Ministry and oversaw relations with small and medium-sized businesses, arrives for a meeting with labor union representatives and French President Emmanuel ... Read more »

How Brooks Koepka feels about fiancée Jena Sims sharing sexy bikini photos

Jena Sims, golfer Brooks Koepka’s fiancée, opened up to her Instagram followers on Tuesday. Instagram Brooks Koepka has no issues with fiancée Jena Sims posting bikini photos online. While participating ... Read more »

I'm A Celebrity chaos as TREE and rocks fall onto set as Storm Barra hits Wales

STORM Barra has caused chaos at the I’m A Celebrity castle – after wind brought down a huge tree and caused a landslide. Gwrych Castle, in North Wales, was battered ... Read more »

India's Bipin Rawat: a soldier's general

© Manjunath KIRAN Bipin Rawat was seen as close to Hindu nationalist Prime Minister Narendra Modi India’s Bipin Rawat was an outspoken, polarising but hugely popular “soldier’s general” who was ... Read more »

Cuba okays local jab for toddlers after Covid-19 infection

© ADALBERTO ROQUE Une infirmière se prépare à vacciner une fillette de 3 ans contre le Covid-19 avec le vaccin cubain Soberana Plus dans le cadre d’un essai clinique, le ... Read more »

Act now to curb Omicron's spread, WHO's Tedros tells world

FILE PHOTO: World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a ceremony to launch a multiyear partnership with Qatar in Geneva GENEVA (Reuters) – Governments should urgently reassess their national ... Read more »

Alien 'super-Jupiter' breaks the mold on where planets can exist

1 / 2Alien ‘super-Jupiter’ breaks the mold on where planets can existHandout of an artist’s conception showing NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope as it begins its “Beyond” mission phase By Will ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic