A tree surgeon has told a jury he is not lying about a fatal doorstep shooting being an accident.
Matthew Moseley, 50, claims his son Thomas gunned down Lee Holt, 32, as he reached to take the semi-automatic Beretta shotgun from the 14-year-old.
Mr Holt went to the Moseleys’ address in Oswaldtwistle with his partner, Kate Phelan, and her 15-year-old son, Wesley Metcalfe, to confront Thomas over an ongoing dispute between the schoolboys, the hearing was told.
The Crown say Matthew Moseley alone held the firearm and blasted Mr Holt once in the chest after he heard a commotion outside and opened his front door.
It is alleged he then persuaded Thomas to falsely confess he fired the gun and continued to pressure him to take the blame.
Prosecutor Robert O’Sullivan QC asked the defendant at Preston Crown Court why he did not tell police it was an accident when they arrested his son on the night of the shooting on October 25 last year. He said: “Your case is that it is a terrible accident. Why were you not shouting that from the rooftops to anyone that would listen?
“Why not say it to the police officer when he was putting the handcuffs on your son?”
Mr Moseley replied: “I don’t know.”
Mr O’Sullivan said: “Did you not think it would help your son to tell the arresting police officer that it was a terrible accident?”
The defendant said: “I didn’t get asked anything by the police. Thomas said what he did.”
The prosecutor continued: “But in the police body-cam footage we have seen, you were saying ‘Self-defence, self-defence’. Why did you choose not to reveal what may be very important information at that point?”
Mr Moseley said: “I don’t know.”
Mr O’Sullivan said: “Because you had not thought of it yet, that is the reason.” The defendant said: “On that remark you are very... I don’t need to make it up.”
The jury was told that Mr Moseley did not claim it was an accident either in his original witness statement or in the police interviews that followed when he too was arrested.
Mr O’Sullivan also asked him why he told four different people in phone calls after the shooting in Barnard Close that Thomas was responsible for the shooting. Mr Moseley said he could not remember the conversations. Earlier in the trial, Thomas Moseley told the jury he saw his father - a keen shooting enthusiast - bend down beside his gun cabinet, load a shotgun and then shoot Mr Holt as the front door opened.
Matthew Moseley denies murder.
The defendant told the jury his hand was “nowhere near the trigger” when the gun was discharged.
He explained he raised his left hand to the fore-end of the weapon to “make it safe”. Mr Moseley agreed the resulting shot could have gone anywhere.
Mr O’Sullivan said: “So, bad luck it went directly into Mr Holt’s chest?
The defendant said: “Yes, that’s the way it was, as odd as it seems.”
He said he had not told police about grabbing the fore-end of the weapon because he was not asked.
He said: “I was asked if I fired the shotgun.”