THE man accused of murdering Simon Shotton returned after the killing “covered in blood” and told his girlfriend “it’s over.”

Benjamin Atkins then said he was going to “chop up the body and put it in the sea” and assured Debbie Pereira that “no one would look for him”.

This was the account given by Pereira on Tuesday when she took to the stand at Winchester Crown Court.

But Zafar Ali KC, representing Atkins, said Pereira was a “fluent liar” and noted inconsistencies in her accounts.

Pereira said that Mr Shotton had been living with her and Atkins at their flat in Aylesbury Road, Boscombe, for two weeks last summer.

Dorset Echo: Simon Shotton, 49Simon Shotton, 49 (Image: Dorset Police)

In the early hours of August 18, Atkins reportedly stole £30 from Mr Shotton’s wallet so the couple could go out and buy drugs.

Pereira said that when they returned home, Mr Shotton waved a syringe containing ‘heroin and crack’ and shouted, “I want my f*****g money.”

She said she went into her bedroom with Atkins for a short while, but Mr Shotton stayed in the utility room of the flat and refused to leave until he got his money.

Pereira described how in a heated moment, Atkins “went towards” Mr Shotton, and they “both got hold of each other”.

Pereira said she panicked and ran to the bedroom, but returned to the utility room where the men were after hearing “shouting” and “banging”.

Dorset Echo: Simon Shotton's remains were found dumped across BoscombeSimon Shotton's remains were found dumped across Boscombe (Image: NQ)

She told the court: "I could see Benny [Atkins] was on the floor, and Simon [Shotton] was on top of him.

"Simon was hunched over him and Benny had hold of him.”

Pereira said Atkins told her to go into the bedroom. She recalled Atkins joining her there about five minutes later, with blood “all over his face and all over his top half”.

He reportedly told her, 'it's over' and ‘he’s dead’, before saying Mr Shotton’s last words were ‘help me’.

Pereira said she and Atkins then stayed in the bedroom for “an hour or more” and did drugs together.

She said she saw Mr Shotton’s body “covered in blankets and clothes” in the utility room the following day, noting there was blood “all over the walls and floor”.

Dorset Echo: Atkins and PereiraAtkins and Pereira (Image: Social Media)

She said she didn’t see Atkins dismember Mr Shotton, but said Atkins told her he’d “done it in the garden”.

"It was horrible. I didn't want Simon to die.”, Pereira told the jury.

When asked why she didn’t phone the police on Atkins, Pereira said: “He had this way of controlling me, I felt like I had to be loyal to him.

"He'd always ask me, 'if I did anything stupid, would I grass him up?' and I'd say 'no', but I'd never in a million years thought he'd end up murdering someone.”

Mr Ali KC challenged Pereira on her comments about Atkins being controlling.

He noted CCTV recorded just hours after Mr Shotton’s death, showing Atkins and Pereira walking together in Christchurch Road, “arm in arm" and “like teenagers falling in love for the first time”.

Dorset Echo: Atkins and Pereira's arrests were caught on body worn camerasAtkins and Pereira's arrests were caught on body worn cameras (Image: Handout)

He referenced her first police interview, where she said, "We've got a good connection and we communicate.

'We don't argue, we don't fight and we communicate.”

Mr Ali KC also got Pereira to accept she had lied in her three police interviews, and noted evidence given in court on Tuesday was different to her first defence statement, and amended defence statement.

Prosecutor Paul Cavin KC put to Pereira that she “allowed” Atkins to dismember Mr Shotton at her flat.

He suggested that Pereira was seen on CCTV after the killing in 'different clothing' because she had changed out of her own bloodied clothes.

Atkins, 49, has admitted to charges of perverting the course of justice, and preventing the burial of a corpse, but denies murder.

Pereira, 39, denies perverting the course of justice, preventing the burial of a corpse, and murder.

The trial continues.