Mother accused of giving fake alibi


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The Independent Online

The mother of one of the men on trial over the murder of Stephen Lawrence was today accused of giving a fake alibi for her son.

Prosecutor Mark Ellison QC told Theresa Norris that she had invented the story that her son David was at home when Mr Lawrence was killed in April 1993.

He told her: "The first that we've heard of any suggestion that you can alibi your son for this murder is today. I suggest to you that as a result of that you have made it up and it's a recent thing that you have made it up."

Mrs Norris said: "I haven't made nothing up."

Mr Ellison said: "There's not been a breath uttered until today that you were in a position to give your son an alibi."

She answered: "My son would have been at home."

David Norris and Gary Dobson, 36, deny murder.

Mrs Norris told the Old Bailey jury that her son's curfew was 9pm or 9.30pm.

She said: "I had a routine. The routine was my children would be at home."

When David Norris was interviewed by police in the wake of Mr Lawrence's death, his mother did not tell them that she could provide an alibi.

She also failed to mention that clothing seized from the family home belonged to his brother Clifford, as the defence claim.

Mrs Norris told the court: "I was advised by a legal team not to say nothing so that's what you do."

Earlier her son told the court that he was "no angel" but repeatedly protested his innocence.

In dramatic clashes with Mr Ellison, Norris, 35, was asked several times what he was doing on the night Mr Lawrence died.

In apparent exasperation, he declared: "You are accusing me of murder. I am an innocent man."

Norris insisted he was not in the Eltham area on April 22, 1993, when Mr Lawrence was stabbed to death by a racist gang.

"How do you know that?" asked Mr Ellison. "Because I am innocent," Norris declared.

Later he told the jury: "I was not party to Stephen Lawrence's death.

"I played no part whatsoever in his death. I'm not an angel, never have been an angel, but I'm also not a murderer."

He and co-defendant Gary Dobson both deny Mr Lawrence's murder.

Today Norris said he could not explain how fibres and hair linked to Mr Lawrence were found on clothing taken from his bedroom.

The defence has suggested that the clothes could have been contaminated after they were seized by police.

Asked if one of his friends could have murdered Mr Lawrence, Norris replied: "I don't know. They told me they had nothing to do with it and I believe them."

He also told the court that he could not remember where he was that night, despite admitting in a 1999 television interview with Martin Bashir that it was 50-50 whether he was in Eltham.

The jury was sent home until Monday.