5 Maghull men on trial accused of plotting street fight in which teenager Matthew Daulby was killed

Matthew Daulby
-Credit: (Image: Submitted)

Five men are on trial at Preston Crown Court accused of planning a fight in which a teenager was killed.

Matthew Daulby, 19, died after he suffered a stab wound to his chest and an injury to his head after being struck with a rock in a sock during a mass brawl in Ormskirk. Matthew was one of a group of men who travelled from Maghull to Ormskirk to 'avenge' an attack on their friend on the evening of July 28, 2023.

Five other members of the Maghull group are now facing charges of conspiracy to commit violent disorder, relating to the incident in which their friend died. They cannot currently be named for legal reasons.

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Opening the trial at Preston Crown Court, Peter Glenser KC said on the evening of July 28, the men had been drinking in pubs around Maghull when they received a message to their group chat from a pal, who was in Ormskirk with his girlfriend.

He said he had been punched three times in the mouth, by a man who can not be named for legal reasons, and suggested the group "seek retribution", Mr Glenser KC told the jury. A flurry of Snapchat messages followed, which indicated that "this was not only a good idea but it was to be done that night." Messages included: "Let's go", "Going kill these kids... drag them out of any club", and a comment from Matthew, saying: "Daulby angry".

Ten men gathered at the St Gregory's social club and travelled to Ormskirk in two cars. When they arrived they made their way towards the Alpine Bar on foot and came upon their opponents in Railway Road. The man alleged to have attacked their friend was armed with a knife, and another fashioned a makeshift weapon at the scene, by stuffing a rock into a Nike sports sock, the court heard.

Railway Road in Ormskirk.
Railway Road in Ormskirk. -Credit:Google

"You may think that what happened thereafter is that the Maghull group had come to Ormskirk looking for, and prepared to engage in, unlawful violence but were not anticipating that they would be met with armed resistance", Mr Glenser KC said. "As a result some of those who had travelled to the scene froze. Because the offence is the agreement to go and fight this is irrelevant. It’s the agreement that is the offence."

A "violent and chaotic" fight broke out in which four members of the Maghull group suffered knife injuries, the court heard. Matthew and another man were taken to hospital and two others did not require medical treatment for their injuries.

The incident ended when a police car came round the corner and the group scattered. Matthew collapsed in Moorgate, close to the Peri Peri takeaway, bleeding heavily from his head and chest. Emergency services took him to Aintree Hospital but he was pronounced dead at 1.23am. One of the defendants was also taken to hospital for treatment for a knife wound to his back, before he was arrested.

Mr Glenser KC said: "The Crown’s case against these five defendants is that they had travelled to Ormskirk that night with Matthew Daulby and others to avenge an assault that took place earlier on that night, July 28. The messages, the Crown suggests make it clear that this was neither a rescue mission nor a check on the welfare of their friend." All five men deny violent disorder. The trial continues.

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