Preston to Barrow train death victim choked on kebab meat duo forced into his mouth, trial told

A brother and sister are accused of the manslaughter of a Lancaster FC football fan on a train after he choked to death from food that was allegedly 'force fed' to him as he slept.

Monday, 19th April 2021, 3:45 pm

Medics recovered kebab meat the "size of a golf ball" from David Clark's airway, after he collapsed on a train at Silverdale station on his way home from the Lancaster FC v Farsley Celtic match on March 2, 2019.

Nicola Cavin, 22, of Market Street, Grange, and her brother David Noble, 32, of Main Street, Grange - who had known Mr Clark for around five years - are on trial at a new Nightingale Court at Preston North End's football ground to deal with a backlog of criminal court cases.

Married dad Mr Clark, 56, boarded a Preston to Barrow-In-Furness Northern service at Lancaster station with friend Jon Waite, and had enjoyed around 10 pints throughout the day, the court heard.

Police were called to Silverdale station

The defendants and Cavin's boyfriend, Daniel Shepherd, had boarded the service earlier at Preston after going to Blackpool for the day, and the men sat with them.

It is alleged Mr Clark fell asleep and that the siblings pushed food into his mouth - despite Noble having witnessed Mr Clark starting to choke in another pub a month earlier

Police and paramedics were called to Silverdale railway station shortly before 9.30pm after Mr Clark collapsed onboard.

Prosecuting, Ian Unsworth QC, opening the case, said: "This was a chance encounter although as it seems and transpired, David Noble and David Clark did know each other.

Two Nightingale courts are being hosted at PNE to deal with a court case backlog

"Bluntly he was drunk. He fell asleep on the train.

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"Mr Clark was to collapse and the train remained at that station as people tried to help."

Paramedics retrieved meat the size of a golf ball, which had been blocking his airway and further pieces of meat were removed from his throat at the hospital.

But he died at 10.10am the next day, with a post mortem examination finding he had choked to death.

He added: " Both defendants are charged with manslaughter. The prosecution do not say they intended to kill him or even that they intended to cause him really serious bodily harm.

"We say the force feeding of Mr Clark in the manner which it happened, on any objective view, was an assault."

The court was told Mr Noble later told officers a similar thing had happened at the Uplands Hotel in Grange when he began to choke while watching an Ireland and England rugby game.

According to Mr Clark's widow, Susan, it was a problem that had existed for at least a year.

Mr Unsworth added: "We say this is significant. Why? Because we say David Noble, set against that background, clearly knew he had a problem with choking but notwithstanding that decided to force feed him in any event."

(proceeding)

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