CO-WORKERS of the Sheffield factory worker accused of battering one of his colleagues to death today told a court he returned to work a few hours after the alleged attack.
Shaun Wainwright was seen at Fluorocarbon Bakeware Systems (FBS) in Sheffield, where he worked alongside murder victim Simon Holdsworth, on the morning of December 17, 2013, Teesside Crown Court heard.
The 46-year-old is accused of lying in wait for Mr Holdsworth and attacking him as he walked across playing fields to his house in the Hackenthorpe area of the city the previous evening.
The trial jury today heard from three colleagues of the two men who were in the factory’s mess room on a break at around 9am on December 17 when Wainwright entered.
They told the court he said he had planned to go night-fishing the previous evening, but had not been able to go as he left his wallet at work.
Wainwright is then said to have added that he returned to the factory to pick his wallet up but the building was closed, so he returned in the morning.
Describing the conversation, one of the employees, Ranzaib Ali, said: “He came back and he said he came to get his wallet. He was supposed to be going fishing last night.
“He came back last night but the place was shut down, it wad closed, so he couldn’t get his wallet. That is why he came back, so he could get his wallet, so he could go fishing.”
Under cross-examination from Nicholas Rhodes QC, defending Wainwright, Mr Ali said he did not have a one-to-one conversation with the defendant and there were several people in the mess room at the time.
Mr Rhodes suggested to the witness that he had misheard what Wainwright said and that the defendant had actually said he had come to pick up his wallet that day, not the previous night. Mr Ali denied mis-hearing the alleged comments.
Another colleague, Adam Finney, who arrived at work at 7am on December 17, said Wainwright came into the mess room and someone asked him if he had heard about Mr Holdsworth.
At that stage, the court heard, rumours were circulating about what had happened to the 36-year-old paint sprayer, who was engaged to be married.
Mr Finney said that Wainwright replied and said he had heard, that a colleague called Barry Broomhead had told him.
He added: “Terry Fields asked him if he had been fishing and he said ‘no’, because he had left his wallet here the night before.
“He said he had left his wallet there the night before and he had come back last night hoping to get it, but it was shut so he had to come back for it the day after.”
Yesterday, Adam Wilson, a colleague of both men at the firm making non-stick coating for the baking industry, told the court their shift finished at 11pm but he thought Wainwright left at around 10pm.
He told the jury: “He left early that night because he was going night-fishing. He was picking up his friend to go night-fishing.”
Mr Wilson said Simon Holdsworth was still at work when he left at 10.50pm, and told the court it was common knowledge which bus his colleague usually took and how he got home.
Wainwright is alleged to have killed Mr Holdsworth on playing fields by Rainbow Forge Primary School, near his home in Hackenthorpe, on the evening of December 16.
Mr Holdsworth’s body was found on the playing fields the following morning by a member of the public. He had wounds to the back of his head and had a fractured skull, with the injuries consistent with being attacked with a blunt weapon.
Wainwright, of Dagnam Road, Arbourthorne, denies the murder of Mr Holdsworth. The trial continues.