04 December 2023

Woman ran over boyfriend after 'losing her temper', murder trial is told

04 December 2023

A woman killed her boyfriend when she “lost her temper” in an argument after a party and ran him over, a court has been told.

Alice Wood, 23, is accused of murdering Ryan Watson, 24, outside their home in Rode Heath, Cheshire, on May 6 last year.

Earlier that night, the couple had been to a birthday party in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent, for a user of the Headway brain injury charity, where Mr Watson was a support worker, a trial at Chester Crown Court was told.

Andrew Ford KC, prosecuting, said: “Ryan Watson was caught on camera having a good time, being a gregarious and outgoing party guest, having fun and dancing.”

Guests said that while Mr Watson “worked the room”, Wood acted “a bit cold” and as if she “wasn’t best pleased”, Mr Ford said.

Things became fraught, he got out, kicked a door, and she lost her cool and used the car as a weapon

When they left the party, Wood drove Mr Watson’s Fiat Punto back to their home in Oak Street, Rode Heath, and parked on a concrete area behind her car, a black Ford Fiesta, the court was told.

Mr Ford said: “Whilst deeply serious and tragic, we say this is a simple case.

“She lost her temper, had an argument with her boyfriend when they were in drink, in a motorcar.

“Things became fraught, he got out, kicked a door, and she lost her cool and used the car as a weapon.”

Mr Ford said Wood got into the Fiesta and reversed towards Mr Watson, almost hitting him, before driving it backwards and forwards in what one witness described as a “game of chicken”.

Mr Watson walked away and stood in front of parked cars but Wood drove directly into him, turning off the carriageway to hit him, the court was told.

He was knocked on to the bonnet of her car but was able to stand, the jury was told.

Mr Ford said: “She drove straight into Ryan Watson for the second time, head on.

“This time he did not go over the bonnet – she knocked him clean over, under the vehicle’s front end.”

Staff in the nearby Jade Garden Chinese takeaway described hearing a “life-threatening scream”, the court was told.

Mr Ford said Wood drove 158 metres with Mr Watson under the car.

At about 11.30pm, Wood knocked on the door of Theresa Colborne, who lived close to where she had stopped the car, and said: “Please phone an ambulance. I think I’ve ran over my boyfriend,” the court was told.

When police arrived and Wood taken into custody after being arrested on suspicion of murder, she told an officer: “It’s fine, I deserve it.”

She said she had drunk two glasses of white wine, two rums and a glass of champagne and was found to have 61 micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath, compared to the legal limit of 35, the court heard.

Wood, with long blonde hair tied in a ponytail, wiped her face with a tissue at points as the case was opened.

She denies murder.

The trial is due to last for three weeks.

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