Disabled man denies losing temper

A DISABLED Suffolk man accused of attempting to murder his former brother-in-law has denied losing his temper and stabbing him while he was in a “red mist”.

Jane Hunt

A DISABLED Suffolk man accused of attempting to murder his former brother-in-law has denied losing his temper and stabbing him while he was in a “red mist”.

Stephen Oliver, who walks with a limp and suffers from arthritis in his elbows, told a jury that he was annoyed with his sister's former partner Lee Brown for pestering and threatening her but denied that he had gone round to his flat armed with a knife to “sort him out”.

Oliver accepted that he had stabbed the tyres on Mr Brown's van with a screwdriver. “I thought it would be a good way to get back at him,” said Oliver.

He had then rung the doorbell of Mr Brown's flat in Blackfriars, Sudbury, and when Mr Brown came to the door told him “Can you now leave my sister alone?”

He claimed that Mr Brown had been holding a knife and had immediately grabbed hold of him. During a scuffle between the two men Oliver had managed to disarm Mr Brown and he claimed that Mr Brown had then head-butted him several times as he tried to get the knife back.

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Oliver denied that he had been the one armed with a knife and that he had threatened to kill Mr Brown. “It's not in my nature to use a knife,” said Oliver.

He said that although he had previous convictions for dishonesty he hadn't any for fighting or using weapons.

Questioned by prosecution counsel Peter Gair, Oliver denied that he had lost his temper with Mr Brown and had stabbed him in a “red mist”.

Oliver, 40, of FollyRoad, Great Waldingfield, has denied attempting to murder Mr Brown on July 31 last year and a less serious charge of wounding him with intent to cause him grievous bodily harm.

It has been alleged that Oliver went to Mr Brown's flat in Blackfriars, Sudbury, and slashed the tyres of his van because he was upset at the way he had been treating his sister.

He had then knocked on Mr Brown's door and when he opened it allegedly attacked him with a lock knife and told him, “I'm going to kill you” and warned him “not to mess” with his family.

Mr Brown tried to protect himself but during the struggle that followed outside his flat he suffered a stab wound to the back of his neck and two wounds to his thigh measuring 2.5cm and 5cm deep.

During the trial, Ipswich Crown Court heard that Mr Brown had sent Oliver's sister 106 threatening text messages.

The jury is expected to retire to consider its verdict today (Thurs).