Lecturer Rachel Kenehan 'hoped to have child' with Jahmel Jones' accused, Pierre Lewis

Daily Echo: Rachel Kenehan Rachel Kenehan

A LECTURER who fell for a murder suspect she met at a young offenders' prison has told a court how she hoped to have a child with him one day.

Rachel Kenehan, a lecturer in sociology and psychology, had started a relationship with Pierre Lewis, 20, one of three men accused of shooting dead Jahmel Jones at a flat in St Mary's, Southampton in April 20.

Kenehan, 35, is on trial alongside them, accused of conspiracy to supply drugs, assisting an offender and perverting the course of justice.

Jurors heard how she picked up the trio, who had been dealing hard drugs in Southampton, in her car on the day of the murder.

She then let them stay in her house in East London and is alleged to have cleaned evidence off Lewis' trainers with white spirit, Winchester Crown Court heard.

Kenehan, 35, who studied criminology, first met Lewis while he was in custody at Ashfield Young Offenders prison on November 2010, as part of her London Metropolitan University PhD.

Giving evidence yesterday, the lecturer admitted she wanted to have a child with Lewis and dreamed of living together in Brazil.

But she had become concerned that he was travelling to Southampton to help deal drugs - which risked sending him back to prison.

She said: "I just wanted him to come home. I thought he was doing something illegal but he was assisting someone else.

"I wanted him to know we had plans for the future and that I would not give up on him and that I believed him."

Kenehan told the court that she became worried after Lewis told her that "a madness had happened" in Southampton, although she never pressed him on what.

She said: "He never mentioned anyone being hurt or violence. The worst thing I could imagine was him getting arrested."

When she picked Lewis on the day of Mr Jones' murder, from Basingstoke, she said she discovered that his co-accused Jemmikia Orlebar-Forbes and Issac Boateng required a lift too.

The three men had travelled by taxi from Southampton hours after Mr Jones' death, jurors heard.

She then let the men stay in her flat in Bow, in the East End of London for three days, although she said she was never clear about what had gone on in Southampton.

She said: "There was a sadness. It was strange. I tried not to ask questions.

"Mainly as was relieved that Pierre was home."

When asked whether she had assisted her boyfriend following the murder, she said: "I would not have done anything like that. I would not jeopardise my whole life for someone who had murdered someone. I still believe he is not part of this."

She also denied cleaning evidence off Lewis' trainers with white sprit, claiming she had poured the liquid on his shoes following a row.

The court also heard Kenehan admit how she initially was "economical with the truth" during a police interview.

The court heard how she told officers at first that she had not picked the men up after the murder and that she did not know Orlebar Forbes and Boateng, when in fact she later admitted she had dined out with them on several occasions.

She explained to jurors how she had not been "truthful" because she was "overwhelmed" after her boyfriend's arrest and was unsure what she was been suspected of.

Kenehan has pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to supply class A drugs, assisting an offender and perverting the course of Justice.

Lewis, of Barnes, is jointly facing a charge of murdering Mr Jones along with Orlebar-Forbes, 20, of Cloudsdale Road, London, and Boateng, 22, of Hounslow.

They all deny the charge but have pleaded guilty to supplying class drugs.

Proceeding.

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