Pictures of Ashley Dale’s ‘criminal’ boyfriend with her alleged killers have been revealed for the first time after a successful legal challenge by The Daily Mail.
The images – which have been provided to jurors in an ongoing murder trial – show 26-year-old Lee Harrison with Niall Barry, also 26, who is accused of orchestrating the shooting in which Ms Dale lost her life.
Harrison is also shown with Sean Zeisz, 28, a drug dealer who was allegedly part of Barry’s organised crime gang and also on trial for her murder.
Harrison was allegedly the intended target of the shooting in Liverpool in August last year after he fell out with Barry over theft of drugs and after Zeisz was beaten up at the Glastonbury Festival.
But Ms Dale, 28, a local council environmental health officer who was completely innocent, was shot instead when a gunman broke into her home – where Harrison sometimes stayed – and opened fire with a Skorpion submachine gun.
Lee Harrison (left) with Niall Barry. Ashley Dale’s boyfriend has been pictured for the first time after a successful legal challenge by The Daily Mail
Ms Dale, 28, a local council environmental health officer who was completely innocent, was shot dead when a gunman broke into her home
In his closing speech to jurors, prosecutor Paul Greaney, KC, said of Harrison, who has refused to cooperate with police and is believed to be abroad: ‘He has failed to show any human decency, let alone respect and love for his partner. He has put concealing his own criminality above assisting the police investigation.
‘You would be entitled to conclude that all of that is repugnant.
‘All of that, you might think, should make Lee Harrison a person society could shun.’
Barry, Zeisz, and three other men, Ian Fitzgibbon, 28, Joseph Peers, 29, and James Witham, 41 – who admits being the gunman and has pleaded guilty to manslaughter – all deny Ms Dale’s murder.
A sixth man, Kallum Radford, 26, denies assisting an offender.
Police staff investigator David Rawsthorne earlier told the ongoing trial at Liverpool Crown Court that he and officers had been to see Harrison on a number of occasions since Miss Dale’s death, but he did ‘not want to engage’.
He described him as ‘totally uncooperative’.
He said Harrison, who had been in a relationship with Miss Dale for five years, told police he was out with friends on the night of her shooting and had drunk alcohol and taken cocaine.
Mr Rawsthorne said Harrison had seen the police cordon, at the end of Ms Dale’s street, on his way back from a nightclub to a flat in the early hours of the morning.
The court heard he said he had ‘no idea’ why he or Ms Dale would be targeted and ‘vehemently denied’ he was under threat.
Mr Rawsthorne said Harrison did not give his phone to police and said he had lost it in Liverpool city centre on the night of his partner’s death, although police found evidence he was still using the phone after that.
Pictured left to right: Sean Zeisz, Niall Barry and Lee Harrison, who was Ashley Dale’s boyfriend at the time of her death
The jury was told Harrison said he could not believe Barry, who he referred to as Branch, would be capable of killing Ms Dale and said they had fallen out but it was three years before.
He described Witham as an ‘old mate’, the court heard.
The court heard in September that Mr Harrison was told Zeisz, Barry, Witham and Peers had been charged with conspiracy to murder him.
He told police he did not believe they were capable or responsible as he was ‘fine with them’, except one of them – who he refused to name, Mr Rawsthorne confirmed.
Mr Rawsthorne said since the killing Harrison had been in Dubai on several occasions. He is still believed to be abroad.
Trial judge Mr Justice Goose released the pictures yesterday after a request led by The Daily Mail.
Closing speeches are currently ongoing in the trial, with the jury due to be sent out to consider their verdicts later this week.