Blue Waters murder trial begins

A footballer suffered fatal stab wounds after a fight erupted over a refused drink, the Supreme Court heard yesterday.

A female witness gave evidence that Raymond Butterfield got into a fight with Mikiel Thomas, 19, outside the Blue Waters Anglers Club on March 5 after an argument between herself and Mr Butterfield.

Later that same evening, prosecutors allege that Mr Thomas stabbed Mr Butterfield.

Mr Thomas has pleaded not guilty to the murder charge.

During the first day of the trial, the female witness, who cannot be identified due to reporting restrictions, said she attended the club with some friends but the group had decided to leave after a short time because they did not like the music. She said before they could exit, a man offered them shots.

The woman said: “One of my friends didn’t want to take any and one of the guys at the bar called out ‘b***h’. I looked at her and I looked at him. She didn’t know him, so I said something to him and we started arguing.

“Then Raymond chimed in. We started arguing and going back and forth. Then I walked out by myself.”

She told the court that when she left the club she noticed the friend who had refused the shot had already left and crossed the street to the nearby gas station, where she was talking to several members of the Devonshire Cougars football team, including Mr Thomas.

The witness said: “I ran over to her because I was still upset. The Cougars team realised that I was upset and they wanted to know what happened, but I wouldn’t tell them.”

The witness added that the Cougars players, including Mr Thomas, then crossed the street to the club and asked what had taken place.

Several of the people who had previously been inside the club, including Mr Butterfield, were now outside.

During the conversation between the two groups, the witness said she heard Mr Butterfield say that he was the one who had been disrespectful.

She added that Mr Butterfield continued to argue about the incident and the confrontation became more heated.

The witness said: “Then Raymond punched Mikiel. In the face. Then he threw a bottle towards him.

“Everybody broke it up. Raymond went inside and everybody else scattered.”

The witness told the court that Mr Thomas crossed the road and sat on a bench outside the gas station facing the club.

A short time later, Mr Butterfield stepped outside and the two men ran at each other.

“They fell to the ground, they got up and then walked away. Both of them,” she said. “They both walked right, into town, on separate sides of the road.

“Everybody then scattered again and the police came.”

She added that while she knew Mr Thomas from school and was aware of his involvement with the Cougars, she did not know Mr Butterfield by name.

Prosecutor Takiyah Simpson told the court that when the pair collided in the street outside the club, Mr Thomas stabbed Mr Butterfield, who subsequently died as a result of his injuries.

She added: “This case is about the senseless stabbing of a footballer by another footballer that had nothing to do with football.”

The trial continues.

It is The Royal Gazette’s policy not to allow comments on stories regarding criminal court cases. This is to prevent any statements being published that may jeopardise the outcome of that case.