Stab accused: 'I said I would do it'

A JEALOUS man accused of stabbing his pregnant girlfriend after being released early from prison allegedly told paramedics: “I cannot believe they let me out”.

Russell Claydon

A JEALOUS man accused of stabbing his pregnant girlfriend after being released early from prison allegedly told paramedics: “I cannot believe they let me out”.

Father-of-four Derek Burns, from Bury St Edmunds, had thrown off his four screaming children - all below the age of six - as he plunged a 25cm meat cleaver into his partner Leanne Hammond's back, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

After his arrest detective's statements claimed he told paramedics treating him at Ipswich Hospital: “I got out of jail yesterday and found she (Miss Hammond) was cheating on me and I stabbed her.

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“I cannot believe they let me out. I told them I would do it.”

The jury also heard he had said he would carry out a further knife attack on Paul Innis, the focus of his anger, who he discovered his partner had been having an affair with.

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“I did the wrong person. I know I am going back to prison and will not change. I will do him.”

Burns, 46, of Ashwell Road, Bury St Edmunds, has denied wounding Miss Hammond, 23, with intent to cause her grievous bodily harm on December 15 last year.

In a series of drunken rants read out to the jury yesterday by Suffolk Constabulary's Detective Constable Stammers, who led the police investigation, it was claimed Burns said he would pay police officers to “do him a favour” and kill his love rival.

In police interviews he said 23-year-old Miss Hammond, who was five months pregnant with their fifth child at the time, had “fallen” on the knife during an argument at her home in Baldwin Avenue, in Bury St Edmunds, after she had admitted having an affair with her cousin's partner. The couple had been living in the same house as them since September.

After the alleged stabbing, which left Miss Hammond with a punctured lung, Burns had panicked and ran to a local shop where he bought a bottle of whiskey to get drunk, prosecutor Greg Perrins said.

Burns told officers in his interview: “I said a lot of things I did not mean - it was just the alcohol.”

He described to them how a “red mist” had descended over him when his partner of seven years had confirmed his suspicions that she had been carrying on an affair while he was in prison for assaulting her mother and drink driving.

He said he had been so angry with Mr Innis because he was selling drugs in front of his children, as well as being jealous about the affair. But he told police he no longer wished him any harm.

The court also heard from Peter Hammond yesterday, who described the horrifying moment he found his daughter bleeding in the street - fearing she would die.

He told the jury how Burns had unexpectedly been released from prison and turned up on his doorstep on December 14 before going over to see his daughter the following day, demanding to know if she was having an affair.

Mr Hugh Vass, cross-examining for the defence, asked Mr Hammond if at any point Burns had expressed any animosity towards his daughter before he got a taxi, to which he replied “no”.

The trial continues today.

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