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Beccles: Distraught son stabbed his brother-in-law while grieving for his late father, court hears

11:49 08 April 2014

Ipswich Crown Court

Ipswich Crown Court

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A man who was distraught after the sudden death of his father stabbed his sister’s partner for no apparent reason, a court has heard.

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Steven Warren was in the kitchen of the family home in Beccles when Graham Bream pulled a carving knife out of a drawer and stabbed him in the stomach, Ipswich Crown Court was told yesterday.

Mr Warren suffered a tear to his liver and underwent emergency surgery after his abdominal cavity filled with two litres of blood, said Martyn Levett, prosecuting.

Bream, 49, of Kilbrack, Beccles, has denied wounding Mr Warren with intent to cause him grievous bodily harm on June 2 last year and a less serious charge of unlawfully wounding him.

Bream, who lived with his parents and had worked with his father Alan at a local auction house for 30 years, started acting strangely after his death on May 24 from a heart attack and began mimicking his hand gestures and expressions, Mr Levett said.

“There is no doubt that in the days following his father’s death Graham Bream was distraught and hysterical and there was a point at which he was suicidal,” he said.

“One of his sisters told police that the change in his behaviour was ‘so quick that it was like a light switch being turned on’.”

Family members were so concerned they took him to see a doctor and shortly before the stabbing Bream had tied his dressing gown cord to a light fitting in a bid to hang himself.

The court heard that following his arrest Bream was sectioned under the Mental Health Act and could not be interviewed by police until the middle of August.

During police interviews he described the events surrounding the stabbing as a “complete blur” and said he had no reason to stab Mr Warren.

Dr Trevor Broughton, a forensic psychiatrist, told the court that in his opinion Bream was suffering from a severe depressive episode at the time of the stabbing and did not have the mental capacity to know what he was doing.

He said Bream felt guilty that he had not been able to save his father’s life.

The trial continues today.

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