A MAN standing trial accused of murdering another man in Popley said he had a knife “stuffed in his coat pocket” to defend himself.

As previously reported, Jordan Clarke, 25, of no fixed abode, stands trial at Winchester Crown Court, accused of the murder of 22-year-old Troy Harkness.

Harkness was found seriously injured in Abbey Road, near the junction with Popley Way, on January 19.

SEE ALSO: Popley murder: Defendant claims he ‘gave up’ chasing murder victim who ‘had a knife in his waistband’

He was taken to Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Opening the trial last month prosecutor Kerry Maylin said Harkness died due to stab wounds he sustained following an altercation in Melrose Walk, in which he had stolen drugs from Clarke.

On Friday, August 5, Clarke's defence barrister Nicholas Hagen questioned Clarke about why he was carrying a knife on the day of the incident.

Clarke said: “I had scales, a grinder which was for personal use, my phone, and a knife on me.

"I thought if a knife was pulled on me, I would be able to defend myself.

“It was in my coat; I had a rip in my pocket and the knife was stuffed between the inner and the outer layer.”

Despite this Ms Maylin said Clarke had chosen the “biggest sharply pointed knife” and “rode around Basingstoke with it”.

The court heard from Clarke that during the altercation Harkness had threatened to stab him and had a “knife in his waistband”.

READ MORE: Man died from two stab wounds and 'catastrophic blood loss' after stealing drugs

Mr Haggen added:“At any time during the incident as far as you are aware did you stab Troy, do you know how he got the injuries and if you did stab him, was it deliberate?”

Clarke answered no. He added: “I believe I could have acted in a better way, and I made a bit of a fool of myself. In my mind, I had been assaulted and betrayed, but I have done nothing wrong.”

When questioned by Mr Hagen if the knife in his possession had blood on it after the altercation Clarke answered no.

Clarke denies one count of murder.

The trial continues.

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