Hartlepool murder accused stabbed brother with butter knife as a child and threatened him with axe, court hears

Man accused of murdering Hartlepool mum Kelly Frankin stabbed his brother in the back with a butter knife when they were children, a court has been told.

A brother of a man accused of murdering mum of three Kelly Franklin told a jury the accused 'disgusts' him.

Torbjorn Kettlewell.

Torbjorn Kettlewell.

Michael Kettlewell said he had never got on with Torbjorn Kettlewell, who he knew by his birth name of Ian, since the pair were children.

Torbjorn Kettlewell is accused of murdering his former partner Kelly Franklin by stabbing her more than 30 times.

"He disgusts me," said off-shore worker Michael Kettlewell in a statement read to Teesside Crown Court.

"Not just because of what he did to Kelly, but because of the way he has always been.

Police at the scene of the death of Kelly Franklin.

Police at the scene of the death of Kelly Franklin.

"We have never got on as brothers should.

"He is manipulative, thinks highly of himself, and thinks he is always right."

Michael Kettlewell said his brother was obsessed with knives, and had stabbed him in the back with a butter knife when they were children.

"He is also obsessed with the Army," added Michael Kettlewell.

Hartlepool mum Kelly Franklin.

Hartlepool mum Kelly Franklin.

"He wears Army clothes and tells people he served in the Army.

"I know for a fact he was never in the Army."

Michael Kettlewell said he was 'sure' Torbjorn had physically abused Ms Franklin during their 12-year relationship.

"I never witnessed it," said Michael Kettlewell. "But I saw her with bruises.

Police investigating the murder to Kelly Franklin.

Police investigating the murder to Kelly Franklin.

"He would not have done anything while I was there because I would have tried to protect Kelly.

"He would only pick on a small person, someone who was vulnerable.

"He once threatened me with an axe, I took it from him, he has no bottle."

Michael Kettlewell said he and his family were 'desperately sorry' for what happened to Ms Franklin, and for the distress caused to her family.

Torbjorn Kettlewell is jointly accused of murdering Ms Franklin with Julie Wass, a former lover who used to live next door to the couple in Kipling Street, Hartlepool.

Prosecutors claim that after the couple split up, Ms Wass kept watch on Ms Franklin for Kettlewell, telling him who visited and when she went out.

Jane Langstaff, a friend of Ms Franklin, told the jury that during a visit she noticed the curtains in Ms Franklin's house were closed even though it was daylight.

"I went to open them," said Ms Langstaff. "Kellly told me not to because Julie next door was telling Ian who was calling and what she was up to.

"She told me that before he moved out, he was no help in the house, he would just sit about.

"Once when we were on our way to Kingdom Hall she got a message asking her where she was going 'all dolled up'.

"Another time she got a message to say he was coming round with an axe.

"I spoke to Kelly about going into a refuge, but she said she wanted to keep the house.

"The children had been taken by that time, and she thought she needed to have the house to have a chance of getting the children back."

Kettlewell, 30, of Oval Grange, Hartlepool, denies murder on August 3.

Wass, 48, of Kipling Road, Hartlepool, denies murder.

She admits assisting an offender.

The case continues.