Gainsborough murder trial: Man accused of killing Ivans returned home very drunk on the night of his death

Ivans Zdanovics
Ivans Zdanovics

The long-term partner of a man accused of murder has told a jury how he came home very drunk on the night he is alleged to have been involved in the killing.

Aista Solagubovaite , whose partner Andrus Giedraitis is alleged to have committed murder along with Martynas Kupstys, told the jury at Lincoln Crown Court that Giedraitis arrived back at their house in the early hours.

Giving evidence through an interpreter she said that Giedraitis spoke to her after entering the house.

She told the jury: “He told me ‘You won’t believe what Martynas did’.”

“He’s stupid.”

“He’s an idiot.”

“I can’t believe he set a person’s house on fire.’ “

She said Gieraitis told her that Kupstys had tried to set fire to the man’s jacket and to a curtain.

Miss Solagubovaite added: “Andrus tried to stop him.”

“He couldn’t believe what was happening.”

She told the jury that she did not initially mention the conversation with Giedraitis when she was seen by police officers.

She said: “I didn’t say what Martynas did.”

“I was scared for my safety.”

Kupstys and Geidraitis are alleged to have murdered Ivans Zdanovics,24, after setting fire to their victim’s rented home in Etherington Street, Gainsborough.

The body of Mr Zdanovics was found by a friend who called to see him.

His death was as a result of smoke inhalation.

The jury was told that the property was heavily smoke-logged when ambulance staff arrived at the scene.

Paramedic Tracey Wardle told the jury that she entered the house with a colleague but the smoke was so dense she struggled to find her way around.

She said: “It was dark.”

“It was smoky.”

“It was sooty.”

“You couldn’t see.”

“I had to feel my way in.”

“The smell was horrendous.”

“It hit your throat straight away.”

“Upstairs it was really smoky to the point where I had to open a window in the bedroom.”

“Once I confirmed death I asked everybody else to leave.”

“It was just too dangerous to be there because of the smoke and the fumes.”

Fire investigator Kenneth Baker, who examined the scene of the blaze, said he discovered five separate seats of fire in the downstairs area of the house.

He told the jury: “I believe almost certainly that they were deliberately lit with something like a lighter.”

Martynas Kupstys, 26, of Aegir Close, Gainsborough, and Andrus Giedraitis, 30, of Riseholme Road, Gainsborough, each deny the murder of Ivans Zdanovics between 15th and 18th January 2014.

The hearing continues.