A MURDER suspect said he was present and watched his love rival set himself on fire in his car, claiming he committed suicide.

Mark Chilman said he had planned to castrate Neil Parkinson before he learned that he intended to kill himself, arranging to meet him in the lay-by in Ankerdine Road, Cotheridge, near Worcester.

The 52-year-old of Old Post Office, Pencombe, near Bromyard denies murdering the 66-year-old on December 12 last year.

In a police interview, Chilman accepted arranging to meet the father-of-two between 9pm and 10pm on the night of his death, claiming Mr Parkinson had told him he intended to kill himself.

Chilman had previously placed a tracking device on the car of his ex, Juliet Adcock, and had discovered Mr Parkinson was having 'an affair' with his former partner about six weeks before his death.


The jury at Worcester Crown Court was played video footage of one of the interviews, conducted in Worcester on December 15 last year.

The defendant's face could not be seen, his back to the camera as he was interviewed by two police officers.

Chilman said Mr Parkinson told him to follow him in the car, claiming the alleged victim had said: "Tonight's the night to do it."

Chilman told officers he parked his pickup about 25ft behind Mr Parkinson's BMW in the lay-by, claiming the alleged victim had 'stolen' two jerry cans from Giltedge Farm in Broadway.

Both men turned off their engine and headlights, he said. The cans of petrol were already at the lay-by, Mr Parkinson retrieving them from a hedgerow, Chilman said.

"I said 'are you alright?' He said 'yeah'. I said 'I will leave you to it then'. Then I went back to my car" said Chilman.

The defendant also said he asked Mr Parkinson 'are you sure you want to do this?' and Mr Parkinson replied: "Yes, I've had enough. I've wrecked your life."

Chilman said 'as soon as I got in my pickup he must have lit it'. He added: "Yes I should have reported it, called 999. It was his choice."

The defendant described hearing 'a big whoosh' as the fire took hold. When an officer suggested it would have been 'very painful', Chiman answered: "I wouldn't want to be burned alive."

Chilman left his personal mobile phone at home because he 'didn't want to be traced' although he accepted he bought three pay as you go phones, giving one of them to Mr Parkinson on December 7 last year. The other he said he kept for himself.

He said he threw his pay as you go phone out of the window as he headed towards Bromyard. When asked if her had thought about giving Mr Parkinson some help he said: "It was either him or me. He decided he wanted to go."

Chilman admitted that he has talked to a friend, Andy Underwood, about castrating Mr Parkinson before he decided 'no, I ain't doing that'.

He also talked about wanting to punch Mr Parkinson.

"I've got nothing to lose" he told officers. "I know he's got other people after him - he has been a naughty boy over the years."

He was asked about his decision to drive off once the fire took hold. The former handyman said: "I couldn't stay and watch it. I'm not that sick."

Chilman added: "I didn't do it to him. He done it to himself."

He also said: "I'm admitting I was there and it was going to happen so I'm liable. I regret doing it now."

In another interview Chilman said of Mr Parkinson's death 'I'm guilty' and 'I have caused him to do it'.

When pressed by officers to know what happened on the night he said: "I'm through with it now."

Chilman said he would like to know why Mr Parkinson had sex with 'my missus', using a cruder term to describe it.

The trial continues.