Man goes on trial accused of attempting to murder daughter’s ex-boyfriend on Aberdeen street

© DC ThomsonChristopher Willett outside Aberdeen High Court
Christopher Willett outside Aberdeen High Court

A man has gone on trial accused of attempting to murder his daughter’s ex-boyfriend by striking him with an axe outside his workplace.

John Quantrell is alleged to have attacked Christopher Willett on Mansfield Road and Sinclair Road in Torry on September 11 last year by smashing windows in a car he was in and later speeding towards him in a vehicle and hitting him.

Yesterday the High Court in Aberdeen heard from Mr Willett, 36, who claimed he went into “survival instinct” and thought he would die if he didn’t act urgently.

He told the court that he had been in a relationship with Mr Quantrell’s daughter between December 2004 and September 2015 but that their parting was acrimonious and her family had never liked him.

Advocate depute Eric Robertson asked him what happened as he left his workplace of Trojan Crates in Torry on the day in question with colleague Jason Steele.

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He said: “As we went into the car there was a bang against his car.

“‘I said to Jason ‘that car has just hit your car.’

“The person on their passenger side came round across to the passenger side window.

“I thought ‘what is going on’, I thought it was some sort of road rage.

“The next thing I know the window is starting to get hit.”

He then claimed the glass was smashed with a hatchet and the man swung four blows with the weapon against his head, chest, legs and arms.

Mr Willetts added: “It became survival instinct and I thought to myself if you stay here you are dead.

“I thought get your feet out of the window, better they get hit than the head, neck or throat.

“At some point I did manage to get out of the car.”

He claimed that after removing his assailant’s hood and scarf he realised it was Quantrell.

Following this he claimed the next thing he could remember was waking up in the street and being treated by paramedics.

Representing Quantrell, of Regensburg Court in Aberdeen, defence counsel David Moggach questioned his version of events.

He said: “Mr Quantrell saw you and stated he wanted to speak to you, it might have been on pleasant terms but he wanted to speak to you.”

Mr Willett replied: “That is 100% not right, the first I recognised him was when I got out of the car.”

Mr Moggach then suggested the gaps in his memory including not knowing how he got out of the car were implausible.

He said: “I am only telling you things I am 100% sure of.”

Quantrell, 65, denies the charge against him.

The trial, before Lord Clark, continues.