11 Aug 2015

Murder accused closed his eyes during attack

12:42 pm on 11 August 2015

The man accused of murdering gang member's son Connor Morris has told a court he closed his eyes and swung a sickle to protect his younger brother.

Connor Morris

Connor Morris Photo: Facebook

Michael Murray is on trial in the High Court in Auckland, charged with the murder of Connor Morris, who died following a street fight in west Auckland just over a year ago.

Murray told the jury that on that night he saw one of his friends getting beaten and ran back home to get the sickle.

He said he saw his brother Stanley a short time later being pulled by the hair and being hit with an uppercut once or twice.

Mr Murray said he yelled at the man to stop and then stepped forward, closed his eyes and swung the sickle in the vicinity of the man.

He said he did not know where the man was hit, but grabbed his brother and ran from the scene, throwing the sickle in the bushes.

Murray began giving his evidence by describing his childhood and talking about his mother's death, including the impact that had on him and his siblings.

Opening the defence, Marie Dyhrberg, QC told the jury Michael Murray was like a father to his brother Stanley, who is 12 years younger.

She said Mr Murray used the sickle because he knew his brother couldn't protect himself against Head Hunters gang members.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs