Car park stabber's appeal rejected

A drug addict – who punctured the lung of his victim by stabbing him four times – has had an appeal against his potentially lifelong sentence thrown out by top judges.

Simon John Whelan, 31, of Cottingley Drive, Leeds, was imprisoned indefinitely at Leeds Crown Court in May after he admitted wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

His lawyers appealed against the sentence which, as with life imprisonment, means Whelan will only be released if he can convince a parole board he is no longer a danger to the public.

Three senior judges, sitting at the Court of Appeal, rejected his pleas.

Lord Justice Pitchford told the court Whelan got into an argument with David Swaine in a car park in the Cottingley area of Leeds in October 2009.

Whelan produced a kitchen knife and stabbed Mr Swaine three times to the chest and once to the ear, shouting "get to the ground, I've stabbed you".

Mr Swaine managed to stumble to his sister's house where he collapsed in the hallway. He had a punctured lung and needed a chest drain to clear the blood from around his lungs.

The judge said Whelan had 45 previous convictions and had been in an out of prison since 2000 and was on licence for burglary when he stabbed Mr Swaine.

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