"The court heard that Bessant had attempted suicide three times in the past three years due to depression and had received increasing doses of anti-depressants to cope with his problems."http://www.thewestonmercury.co.uk/content/twm/news/story.aspx?brand=Westonmercury&category=news&tBrand=westonmercury&tCategory=znews&itemid=WeED05%20May%202010%2008%3A49%3A37%3A580
A TEENAGER accused of murdering his drunk housemate in Weston has denied intending to kill.
Bradley Bessant admits punching Mark Pinnell until he passed out and later jumping onto his chest in the early hours of September 10 after a fight in the Ashcombe Road house they shared.
But the unemployed Clevedon man denied meaning to cause the injuries that killed during a row over a bottle of vodka.
At Bristol Crown Court on Tuesday the 19-year-old, of Teignmouth Road, said he had not pushed Mr Pinnell down a flight of stairs or jumped on his chest deliberately.
The victim was later found to have sustained multiple bruises, 48 rib fractures and a ruptured liver.
Giving evidence, Bessant told the court he was trying to move Mr Pinnell to his own bedroom after a fight in another tenant's bedsit, when he fell backwards down the stairs.
Bessant said: "I meant to turn him round, but he put his hand on the banister and another on the wall.
"I thought he had his balance so I let go and he started falling backwards.
"I then tried to grab hold of him, but he was moving too fast, so I then ran down the stairs.
"I meant to jump over him, but he moved in the way."
Former Priory Community School pupil Bessant added that he then moved Mr Pinnell, who was later found to be more than seven times over the drink-drive limit, to his bedroom and put him in the recovery position, thinking he would sleep off his injuries.
But 45 minutes later he returned to find Mr Pinnell pale, cold and not breathing, before calling for help and dialling 999.
He admitted lying to paramedics and in an initial police interview on September 10 about how the victim sustained the injuries.
In a second police interview he changed his story, saying Mr Pinnell had been beaten up in town, adding that he had lied because he was scared about what might happen.
Bessant said the row had begun in the room of Jack Wood, another tenant, when Mr Pinnell accused him of stealing a bottle of vodka earlier in the evening.
Bessant, who was taking medication for depression at the time, said he had twice knocked out the man for verbally abusing him and his baby daughter, who was not present, before deciding to take him downstairs.
The court heard that Bessant had attempted suicide three times in the past three years due to depression and had received increasing doses of anti-depressants to cope with his problems.
He had moved into the flat only two days earlier after his girlfriend, the mother of his child, asked him to leave her home.
The prosecution's case is that Bessant beat Mr Pinnell to death, punching and kicking him repeatedly over a period of hours.
At an earlier hearing, Bessant had pleaded not guilty to murder.
The trial continues.