Teen sentenced for school stabbing
A 15-YEAR-OLD boy has been sentenced to 12 months in a young offenders' institute for stabbing a pupil with a kitchen knife at a Suffolk school.The youth, who cannot be named for legal reasons, followed the victim into the school toilets during a maths lesson to try and resolve an on-going dispute between them in May last year.
By Danielle Nuttall
A 15-YEAR-OLD boy has been sentenced to 12 months in a young offenders' institute for stabbing a pupil with a kitchen knife at a Suffolk school.
The youth, who cannot be named for legal reasons, followed the victim into the school toilets during a maths lesson to try and resolve an on-going dispute between them in May last year.
Once inside he grabbed him and said he was going to kill him, before plunging the knife into the boy's stomach.
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At Ipswich Crown Court, Judge Peter Thompson yesterday sentenced the youth, from north Suffolk, to 12 months in a young offenders' institution for wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
He told him: "You took a large kitchen knife from your home. You strapped it to your leg under your trousers so that it was concealed and the school knew nothing about it.
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"You stabbed the victim to the stomach causing a very deep and dangerous wound. He was at risk of death.
He added: "It seems to me that public disapproval of this very serious incident must be visited with a custodial sentence."
The court heard the defendant suffered from behaviour problems and had recently been diagnosed with autism.
John Butcher, prosecuting, told the court in the days before the incident, there had been an undercurrent of tension between the two boys.
Shortly before 10.15am on May 9 last year, the victim, also 15, left his maths lesson to go to the toilet where he received a mobile telephone call. The defendant followed him.
Mr Butcher said: "He (the victim) was about to leave the toilet when the defendant grabbed him and said he was going to f****** kill him. He then pulled him (the victim) on to a knife he was holding," he said.
"The knife entered his body in the area of the stomach. Teacher witnesses at the school heard loud screams coming from him (the victim) that drew them to the scene. There they saw him leaving the toilets clutching his stomach and fall to the floor with blood flowing from his abdomen."
The victim was taken to Ipswich Hospital in a critical condition.
The wound was three quarters of an inch in width, and pierced the liver and pancreas. The victim lost ten litres of blood and he was treated in intensive care and put on a ventilator overnight. His condition was stable but critical.
The court heard the defendant was seen running from the toilet after the stabbing by a teacher, who managed to stop him.
Mr Butcher said the defendant told the teacher: "I have done something. You have got to let me go."
The defendant admitted to police he lunged at the boy with a knife but denied he intended to kill him or cause him serious harm. He said the boy called him names regularly and he feared a confrontation when he returned to school after the holidays.
Mr Butcher said the incident had affected the victim's exams and his predicted A grades had dropped to C and D and it had also affected his football career.
Mark Norman, mitigating, said it was not a case where the defendant was "wicked" and the incident would not have happened had it not been for his psychological and physical condition.
Mr Norman said the defendant had experienced behaviour problems as early as three years old, and throughout his school life had been described as being vague and failing to carry out instructions. He had also been bullied because he suffered from a lisp all his life.
Around the time of the incident, the defendant was taking medication for depression, caffeine tablets to help him sleep and drinking whiskey at 5am to help him sleep and boost his confidence.
He said: "He doesn't choose to be this way. He certainly didn't choose to be born with a lisp. His childhood should have been happy and care free, it's been absolutely miserable. He has been misunderstood for most of his life."