Northern Ireland news

Man goes on trial charged with Ballymena murder

Jason Lee Martin

A GUILTY plea to the killing of Jason Lee Martin was rejected as a man went on trial for murder.

Jordan Bradley Jake McClintock (19) from Orkney Drive in Ballymena, pleaded guilty to the manslaughter by way of "diminished responsibility" of the 31-year-old who died after being stabbed during a party on June 27 last year.

However, prosecutor Richard Weir QC told Antrim Crown Court sitting in Belfast he had taken instructions to "reject" that plea and would ask the court to continue with the murder charge.

Judge Mr Justice Humphreys told the jury that meant "it is not in dispute that the defendant killed Jason Lee Martin. That is something you are not going to have to decide".

"It is accepted that the victim died at the hands of the defendant.

"It's either murder or manslaughter, and that's the task you will be asked to carry out."

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