A JURY has retired to consider its verdict in the trial of a man accused of murdering children’s care worker Danny Fox.

The six men and six women of the jury were told they were “under no pressure of time” by judge Mr Justice Neil Garnham to reach a decision as they retired on Tuesday afternoon (November 14) to begin deliberations.

Leighton Holt, 21, of Custley Hey, Stockbridge Village, denies murdering the 29-year-old in the early hours of Friday, September 2, 2016.

Mr Fox died after sustaining a wound from a butterfly knife described as “between a stab and a slash” at the junction of his chest and neck on the car park of Sports Direct on North John Street.

In summing up, the judge stated that the jury has heard testimony from defendant Holt and numerous witnesses during the trial, which was in its 11th day.

The court heard that before Mr Fox’s death Holt was alleged to have threatened to punch one of Mr Fox’s friends, Joel Maudsley on Westfield Street after she had refused to give him a cigarette in a conversation the judge described as “open to dispute”.

The court heard that Andrew Parr, a friend of Mr Fox’s had slapped Holt following his interaction with Miss Maudsley, and Holt replied: “I’ll f****** slice you.”

A group consisting of Mr Fox, Mr Parr and Peter Edwards then followed Holt from Westfield Street to North John Street.

In a confrontation on the car park at around 3am, Mr Fox sustained the fatal wound, which was eight centimetres in length.

The judge invited the jury to consider whether on the journey to North John Street whether Holt was “shouting threats” and why Mr Parr, Mr Fox and Mr Edwards followed him and whether they were “responding to the threat” and “concerned about the girl” or “were they following him with a view to subsequently teach him a lesson?”

Witnesses’ accounts of the confrontation between Mr Fox and Holt were heard.

The court was told that Holt claims he was “running for his life” and believed Mr Fox and Mr Parr, who had become split up at the car park, were going to attack him.

Holt, who changed direction while on the car park before the confrontation with Mr Fox, claimed that he couldn’t have outrun them and wouldn’t have been able to “punch his way out”.

Holt claimed he carried a knife with him as he and his family were subject to threats after he had seen a friend kidnapped following a boxing fight at Goodison Park in May.

The jury was told forensic pathologist Dr Jonathan Medcalf concluded that “moderate force” had been used to cause Mr Fox’s wound.

Holt said he became aware of blood on the knife after he had run from the scene and was near Cineworld cinema and he later disposed of the knife in a taxi near to McDonald’s.

Holt’s aunt Michelle Hill stated that Holt had said the following morning: “What have I done?” adding “he was in bits”.

He said to her when she asked why he had a knife: “I’ve been terrorised for months”.

Mr Justice Garnham added that questions he asked the jury to consider were suggestions” and he asked them to “address such issues as are necessary to enable you to reach a verdict".

He invited them to use their “common sense and experience of the world”.

After retiring, the jury requested to see the weapon, which each juror was allowed to hold in court before they returned to deliberations.

After they did not reach a unanimous verdict by the end of the day, deliberations were adjourned until 10am on Wednesday morning.