A HUSBAND stabbed his wife to death at their home in Stoke Prior after taking part in a drinking game on New Year's Eve, a court has heard.

David Clark, who denies the murder of 44-year-old Melanie Clark, allegedly dialled the emergency services nine minutes before midnight and told the operator: "I am sorry. I have killed my wife."

A jury at Birmingham Crown Court heard the victim was found dead at the couple's home in Cloverdale in the early hours of January 1.

Opening the Crown's case against Clark on Thursday, prosecutor Benjamin Aina QC said the defendant - whose birthday is on New Year's Day - and his wife were both estimated to be more than double the drink-drive limit at the time of the stabbing.

Jurors heard the couple had visited a friend's home on New Year's Eve, where they had shared three bottles of Prosecco before playing a snakes and ladders drinking game using American whiskey and apple shots.

After they left their friend's property - apparently in good spirits - the couple returned home in a taxi and started to argue, the court heard.

Clark, who later told police he could not remember stabbing his wife, was arrested at about 12.30am after armed police were deployed to detain him.

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The scene in Cloverdale, Stoke Prior, Bromsgrove on New Year's Day. Picture Matthew Cooper/PA Wire.

The 49-year-old, who was born in South Africa but has a British passport, is alleged to have told an emergency call-handler that he was 'devastated' and didn't know why he did it.

Clark, who had allegedly threatened to kill himself and asked officers to shoot him, told police he could not remember making the comments.

Opening the case, Mr Aina told the jury: "On New Year's Eve last year, just before midnight, David Clark telephoned the emergency services and he told them he had killed his wife.

"Police officers arrived at his home and they found the body of his wife in an upstairs bedroom. She had been stabbed once to the chest.

"It is the prosecution's case that Melanie Clark was killed by her husband following an argument.

"During the argument on New Year's Eve, Melanie Clark had told her husband that she wanted him to leave their home in the morning.

"He couldn't take the rejection and killed his wife."

After he was taken to Worcester Police Station, Mr Clark said he could not remember stabbing his wife, who grew up in Durban and had four children from previous relationships.

Mr Aina told the jury: "He said that he didn't know that he had used a knife, just that he had hurt her."

The trial continues.