Sam Mechelewski Murder Trial: Prosecutor says accused ‘in it together’

Police cordon close to the murder site at Hinchingbrooke Park

Police cordon close to the murder site at Hinchingbrooke Park - Credit: Archant

A jury has been told that both men accused of murdering Sam Mechelewski in Huntingdon were ‘in it together’ and had been lying to the court.

Jordan Shepherd, 23, of Mayfly Close, Chatteris, and Ashley White, 20, of West End, Brampton, have denied his murder.

At Cambridge Crown Court on Wednesday, prosecutor Richard Christie said: “Just look at their actions after the offence, in the days after they were supposedly in fear of each other and what do they do?

“This is business as usual. They are communicating with each other. Remember, Shepherd deleted all of his contacts from his phone, bar eight, and of those, he had deleted Sam’s two numbers, Ashley’s number and he also deleted Ricky’s number as well, a key witnesses in this case.

“These communications go both ways. There is no evidence at all that there is threat going between them. It’s a lie, it has been made up.”

Mr Christie said White and Shepherd were ‘in it together’ and there was no bad blood between the two before or after the murder of Mr Mechelewski, 20, from Huntingdon.

Mr Christie went on to tell the jury that a number of Mr Mechelewski’s possessions had been recovered outside Shepherd’s flat following the murder.

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He said: “What is Sam’s phone doing in the bin at Mayfly Close? It has been thrown away and, on top of that, it has Mr Shepherd’s finger print on it as well. He is disposing of what he thinks is a really incriminating item.

“The reality is Mr Shepherd is the brains and he is disposing of these items along with the knife. Why would he dispose any of them if he wasn’t part of it?”

Ciara Ratcliff, 21, of Sycamore Drive, Huntingdon, also faces trial and has denied a charge of perverting the course of justice in relation to the case.

Mr Christie said: “She [Miss Ratcliff] has not given any evidence to you and so as [the judge] has told you, we have had nothing from her to explain her position.

“[The judge] will tell you there are three elements to the charges. Number one, did she provide false details to the police? Number two, did she give a false statement to the police? Number three, did she assist in his removal of Sam’s belongings?

“Miss Ratcliff did all those things which led her to pervert the course of justice.

“We have some sympathy to the background to the relationship between Ratcliff and Shepherd, but unfortunately feeling panicky, emotional, and even if he has been abusive toward her, it doesn’t stop the charge.”

The court has previously heard how Ratcliff had lied to the police about her whereabouts and the whereabouts of Shepherd following the murder as she thought there was a drug investigation involving him.

Mr Christie said: “The only issue that you are going to rest on is whether this done to pervert the cause of justice of a murder investigation or was it done to protect her boyfriend in a drug investigation. Miss Ratcliff knew that the police were investigating a murder; there is no doubt about it.

“She was told not to worry about the drugs and to worry about the murder. In doing so she provided an alibi for the murderer.

“She also failed to mention that she and Shepherd disposed of Sam’s mattress and it was dumped in order to assist Shepherd in getting rid of any links between him and Sam.

“She knew what she was doing was wrong. She knew she was tampering with evidence. Moving a mattress has nothing to do with a drug investigation.

“What we suggest that all three are guilty of what they have been charged with.”

The court will also hear closing statements from barristers representing Ratcliff, White, and Shepherd.

The case continues.