THE man accused of murdering Kai Archer told jurors he had no intention of seriously harming or killing anyone.

Jamie Higgs, of Windsor Road, Bournemouth, addressed the court for the opening of the defence case at Winchester Crown Court yesterday.

The 19-year-old, is accused of murdering Mr Archer, 20, who died in Poole Hospital after sustaining three stab wounds in St Swithun’s Road on the night of November 16.

The defendant, who was represented by Nadine Radford QC, was called to give evidence at the trial.

Before going to Mr Archer’s home on November 16, Higgs said he had taken two diazepam, had drunk wine and was feeling “tipsy” but was “with it”.

Higgs said Mr Archer started acting strangely after going to his house to meet him.

“I confront him, he said ‘shut up’, he grabbed me and I hit him with a bottle,” Higgs told the court.

“I didn’t hit him with all my force, it was a whack, but I didn’t put lots of force into it.”

The pair settled the dispute and went to meet other people. Mr Archer walked ahead of Higgs, and CCTV played in court showed the defendant walking down the road behind him and then backtracking.

Higgs said another male threatened to Taser him before the altercation with Mr Archer.

He added: “All I remember is I didn’t want to turn around in case I got stabbed in the back or Tasered.

“I was scared I wasn’t able to get out of there. I held the knife out and showed them I had it so they would not come for me.

“I had the knife in my right hand, (Mr Archer) grabbed me with his right hand and went to grab my wrist.”

Demonstrating what happened outside Bournemouth Pizza Company in St Swithun’s Road, Higgs said he pulled away from Mr Archer’s hand and thought he stabbed him in the arm, but it went beneath the armpit.

Speaking of the other two stab wounds, Higgs said: “In the fight I was punching, I didn’t think I am going to stab anyone in the fight, I think he got caught with the knife.

“I didn’t go to kill anyone, I was not, in anyway, trying to stab him.

“I didn’t want to be there and didn’t want to fight three lads against me, I didn’t have much time to think.

“I had no intention to seriously harm or kill anyone.”

Speaking about why he had the knife, Higgs told the court his housemate in supported accommodation wanted to go out and steal from shops.

His housemate wanted to take a knife to which Higgs said no but his housemate would not accept it, jurors were told.

To stop him, Higgs said he took one of his cooking knives but said he had no intention of handing it over to his housemate.

Higgs denies murdering Mr Archer. The trial continues.