Bury St Edmunds: Men jailed after knife attack on love rival

A JEALOUS husband who carried out a “revenge” attack on a US serviceman who had an affair with his wife has been jailed for nine years.

Ryan Otto and his friend Peter Raeburn kicked down the door to Jonathan McNeely’s flat in Gosnold Street in Bury St Edmunds in the early hours of New Year’s Day and left him with potentially life threatening injuries.

Ipswich Crown court heard how after Raeburn stabbed Mr McNeely twice in the back.

Otto, 32, of Airfield Road, Bury St Edmunds and Raeburn, 33, of Eastbourne, were initially charged with attempting to murder Mr McNeely but this charge was left on the court file after their guilty pleas to a less serious offence of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm were accepted by the prosecution.

Jailing Otto for nine years and Raeburn for ten years Judge David Goodin described the attack on Mr McNeely as “savage and brutal”.

He said Mr McNeely had been “pretty well unconscious” through the effects of drink at the time of the attack and had woken to find he was covered in blood and seriously injured.

He managed to call friends and the police for help and spent ten days in hospital recovering from his injuries including a period in intensive care, said Christopher Paxton, prosecuting.

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He said Mr McNeely’s injuries included blunt trauma and stab wounds, the most serious of which were two deep knife wounds either side of his spine which penetrated his chest cavity and resulted in his lungs collapsing.

Mr Paxton told the court that Mr Mc Neely had a brief affair with Otto’s wife Darcey in October last year. The relationship ended and the following month Mrs Otto had a conversation with Mr McNeely about the possibility of her husband confronting him and warned him to “watch his back”, said Mr Paxton.

In mid December Otto had contacted some of Mr McNeely’s friends on Facebook, pretending to be his wife, trying to find out where Mr McNeely lived, what car he drove and which pubs he drank at.

Mr McNeely had gone out with friends in Bury St Edmunds on New Year’s Eve and was at home alone in the early hours of New Year’s Day when Otto and Raeburn kicked down his front door and attacked him.

Neil Mercer for Raeburn said his client had not been armed when he went to the flat and had picked up two knives in Mr McNeely’s kitchen and stabbed him in a “moment of madness”.

Natalie Sherborn for Otto said her client had gone to Mr McNeely’s flat planning to confront him about the affair with his wife and to “give him a few punches.”

She said he felt genuine remorse for what had happened and hadn’t anticipated that Mr McNeely would be stabbed.