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Victim left with tip of knife in his back after fight at Oswestry house

Morda | Crime | Published:

A man was left with the broken tip of a knife in his back after being stabbed during a drunken row between two friends at an Oswestry house, a court heard.

Kristen Breckell needed surgery on the lower part of his back to remove the piece of the kitchen knife after the clash in December last year.

The victim was stabbed by 28-year-old businessman Nicholas Woodhead during a drinking session at his home in the town.

At Shrewsbury Crown Court yesterday, Woodhead was jailed for 16 months, having admitted a charge of wounding. He had said that he had been acting in self defence but the court was told his actions went beyond the use of reasonable force.

Judge Anthony Lowe said that Woodhead had a ‘touch of Jekyll and Hyde’ about him being a hard working family man, but this was the second occasion he had been involved in the use of a knife.

The court had been told Woodhead had previous convictions for assault and a wounding offence in 2008 involving a previous girlfriend.

“When anyone arms themselves with a knife there is always a risk and they are just a stab wound away from a tragic outcome,” said Judge Lowe.

Passing sentence, he said it was accepted the victim had started the dispute between the two men, but it was less clear what happened when Woodhead picked up the knife.

“Your good judgement was clouded by alcohol but I accept you are sorry and remorseful,” he said.

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The court heard that Mr Breckell had cuts to his right hand and to both forearms and to the side of his neck as well as a black eye.

The stab wound to the lower left area of his back was inflicted as he was moving away and the tip of the blade had broken.

On December 15 last year the pair had been drinking at the defendant’s home in Millers Field, Morda, when a row developed.

Miss Caroline Harris, prosecuting, said a bottle was thrown by Mr Breckell into a neighbour’s garden and the two men were grappling which was broken up by the defendant’s partner.

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Back in the kitchen the row continued and Woodhead had ‘grabbed at the first thing to hand’ which was a bread knife when he was protecting his partner.

She said he later told police he was very angry and ‘lost his head’ and could not remember stabbing the victim in the back.

Mrs Debra White, for Woodhead, claimed that it had not been the first time the victim had behaved in an unacceptable way when visiting her client’s home.

She said both men were drinking and matters escalated and it was not clear how the final injury to the back occurred, but it was accepted it went beyond the use of reasonable force for which her client was remorseful.

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