A 37-year-old Ipswich man who was allegedly murdered in the garden of a bungalow in Sutton Heath was stabbed seven times with a kitchen knife, a court has heard.

Consultant forensic pathologist Benjamin Swift told a jury at Ipswich Crown Court that in addition to the seven stab wounds, Richard Hunt suffered several cuts to his hands which could have been caused by him trying to block blows from the knife or by grabbing the knife blade.

Dr Swift said that of the seven stab wounds two were individually fatal. 

One of those wounds penetrated 5cm into Mr Hunt’s left lung, which would have caused the lung to collapse and bleed.

The other wound cut through rib cartilage before slicing through the edge of the upper lobe of the left lung and damaging the heart.

East Anglian Daily Times: Ipswich man Richard Hunt was stabbed to death in the east Suffolk villageIpswich man Richard Hunt was stabbed to death in the east Suffolk village (Image: Dominic Bareham)

Dr Swift said this wound, which was 13cm deep, would have caused massive internal bleeding and stopped the heart pumping blood and oxygen to vital organs.

“This would have led to rapid collapse followed by death soon after,” he added.

He said that “at least moderate force” would have been used to inflict these wounds and the cause of death was stab wounds to the heart and lung.

Before the court is Jay Cotterill, 43, of Ipswich Avenue, Sutton Heath, who has denied murdering Mr Hunt in October last year and an alternative charge of manslaughter.

He has also denied assaulting Mr Hunt’s former partner Stephanie Harvey causing her actual bodily harm.

Cotterill was not in court to hear all Dr Swift’s evidence after becoming unwell.

His legal team said Cotterill was content for the remainder of the pathologist’s evidence to be heard in his absence.

The court has heard that on the night of the alleged murder, Mr Hunt and his former partner Ms Harvey had driven to the home of Cotterill’s partner Debbie Cotterill-Williams' home in Sutton Heath, near Woodbridge.

Prior to the visit there had been an exchange of threatening texts and phone calls between Mr Hunt and Cotterill after Ms Cotterill-Williams found text messages on Cotterill’s phone between him and Ms Harvey.

Ms Harvey had decided to deliver a card wishing Ms Cotterill-Williams luck in her relationship with Cotterill and was driven to Sutton Heath by Mr Hunt, who she’d been in a 13 year relationship before they split up seven years ago.

Giving evidence, she said that after she left the card at the front door, Mr Hunt had used a baseball bat that had been in the back of the car to bang on windows of the property and she also saw him throw a scooter on to a roof.

Ms Harvey, who had previously been in a relationship with Cotterill, said he had come out of the bungalow in his boxer shorts and there had been a fight between the two men during which Mr Hunt was stabbed.

The trial continues.