Andrew Wilkins was instructed in December 2019 by Mander Hadley to defend James Gould in a trial due to start on 6th January 2020. The prosecution had served nearly 14,000 pages of evidence, as well as several discs of CCTV downloads and cell-site evidence from mobile telephones. A previous firm were unable to represent Mr Gould for professional reasons but Andrew was keen to avoid further delays. He was able to analyse the evidence and unused material to be ready to start on time.
The prosecution team, including Queen’s Counsel and junior, had argued that they could demonstrate that Mr Gould had attended an address in Bulkington Road, Bedworth, Warwickshire shortly after Daniel Pitham was stabbed to death there and that there was “an overwhelming inference” that he had done “something purposeful” in order to cover up the crime.
At the close of the prosecution case, after cross-examining witness including a Home Office Pathologist, a forensic scientist, and an analyst from the Warwickshire Police Major Investigations Unit, Andrew Wilkins was able to show that the case against Mr Gould was flimsy and that the evidence which had taken nearly 4 weeks to present did not amount to a case for him to answer as it was consistent with several plausible scenarios. Her Honour Judge de Bertodano agreed, “In my judgment a reasonable jury could not reject all realistic explanations consistent with innocence. Therefore it is my duty at this stage to stop the case.”
Mr Gould was discharged from the dock at Warwick Crown Court with a costs order in his favour so that he is able to reclaim his travel expenses for attending his trial. Whether he is able to return to his employment and his life before his arrest remains to be seen.
The trial continues against other defendants.