CCTV shows last moments of man killed by horse shoe after argument on train over loud music

Thomas Parker, who died after he was attacked at Reading station (Undated British Transport Police handout) (PA Media)
Thomas Parker, who died after he was attacked at Reading station (Undated British Transport Police handout) (PA Media)

CCTV footage of a man’s last moments after he was struck with a horse shoe following an argument over loud music has been shown to a jury.

Golf greenkeeper Thomas Parker, 24, was on an Elizabeth line train with his brother Craig Parker, 27, when the pair got into an argument with Kirkpatrick Virgo, 42, and two of his friends over music being played from a boom box speaker, Reading Crown Court heard.

The CCTV footage also showed Craig Parker pursue and tackle his brother’s killer to the ground inside the station before the pair were separated by security staff.

The court heard the incident began when the defendant and his two friends got on the train at Slough, Berkshire, on July 30 2022.

Thomas and Craig Parker were on their way home from watching an Arsenal game when the older brother approached the group and asked them to turn the music down.

The groups had to be separated twice by two off-duty police officers, the court heard.

Detective Sergeant Keith Bowen told the jury he had just finished a late shift when he got on the crowded train at Ealing Broadway, west London.

He was a few feet away when the two groups began shouting “very personal insults” at each other and had to be separated, he said.

The off-duty officers believed the situation had calmed down and got off the train at Maidenhead.

Det Sgt Bowen said: “It was an argument over loud music. The way it ended like that is madness. It was just lots of verbal insults towards each other. I was shocked at how it escalated.”

CCTV footage showed Virgo moving back up the carriage to where the argument had happened as the train arrived in Reading. He was then filmed pulling out a heavy metal horseshoe from his rucksack.

The court was shown footage of Virgo striking Mr Parker after getting off the train and having a short exchange with him on the platform.

The court also heard from Pc Aaron Petford, who put Virgo in handcuffs and found the horseshoe in his bag.

Pc Petford said: “He replied telling me an argument had taken place with a group of males and one had called him a black c***.”

Despite the efforts of emergency services, Thomas Parker was pronounced dead at 12.40am.

Virgo, from Slough, admits manslaughter and carrying an offensive weapon, but denies murder.

The trial continues.