Fake gun was pointed at guests, jury hears

A CCTV still the jury was told was Joey Curry  inside the Backpackers' Lodge
A CCTV still the jury was told was Joey Curry inside the Backpackers' Lodge
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GUESTS at a backpackers’ hostel told a court of the terrifying moment they were woken in the night and had a gun pointed at them.

A jury at Portsmouth Crown Court was told 19-year-old Joey Curry and another man – who has never been caught by police – walked into the Backpackers’ Lodge, in Florence Road, Southsea, at about 12.20am on February 26 this year.

Using a code to get in, it is alleged the pair went up to the second floor and threatened and attacked an 18-year-old man, as well as threatening his 16-year-old female friend.

The prosecution’s case is that Curry and his accomplice drove from Fareham to Southsea and hatched a plan together to rob the 18-year-old – who cannot be named for legal reasons – as they believed he owed them money. The pair shielded their faces with hoodies and both carried empty bags, the jury was told.

Curry denies knowledge of the robbery plan and told the court he did not know his friend was carrying an imitation pistol.

The trial was told the two lodge guests were sleeping in the same bed when they heard a knock at the door.

The man got up and opened the door.

Giving evidence, he told the court: ‘Something got stuck through the door. I think it was a gun.

‘It was sticking through the gap in my door. It was something silver.’

The witness said he grabbed the gun, pushing it away from him, before he was bludgeoned on the head with the pistol. Still naked, he was able to get out of the room and ran downstairs and hid in a shed outside.

The jury was shown CCTV footage of this, as well as the defendants entering the hostel beforehand.

Curry was shown following the naked teenager down the stairs.

The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, told the court both men had guns, but the defence dispute this.

She said: ‘They had a gun up to my head.’

She claimed the man in the blue hoody – which was Curry – said her friend owed him £300.

She said: ‘He started searching through bits of clothes, bags, drawers and whatever else he could find.’

Curry was caught in the basement by the hostel’s manager and was later arrested. The other man fled.

Curry refused to name his friend.

Curry told the court: ‘I followed (the victim) to see if he was alright. I saw the blood that was coming out. I thought he was hurt.’

He said he believed they were just going to the lodge for ‘a social meet’.

Curry, of Alders Road, Fareham, denies attempted robbery and using an imitation firearm with intent to commit a crime. (proceeding)