Stabbing victim whose life 'unravelled' now jailed for possessing knife himself at Leeds station

A man who was stabbed after giving evidence in a trial has found himself in the dock for possessing a knife at Leeds City Station.

Tuesday, 18th February 2020, 11:45 am

Ian Horsfield aroused the suspicions of a staff member when he spent around 40 minutes in the railway station toilets on January 26 this year, Leeds Crown Court heard.

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The staff member alerted police after approaching Horsfield outside and seeing what appeared to be a knife concealed up his arm.

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A member of staff at Leeds City Station alerted police after becoming suspicious. Picture: Gary Longbottom

Officers confronted the 44-year-old on New Station Street and found a 7in kitchen knife nearby.

Horsfield initially denied the knife was his but went on to plead guilty to a possessing an offensive weapon in a public place and offending while subject to a conditional discharge.

The court heard Horsfield, of no fixed address, had more than 70 offences on his criminal record, including a conviction for possession of an offensive weapon in November 2011.

Hannah Bray, mitigating, said her client had been "very intoxicated" at the time of the latest offence.

"He remembers being in possession of the knife which he says he found outside the station not far from where he put it down," she told the court.

"He doesn't have a good reason for picking up the knife in the first place or taking it into the toilets with him."

Miss Bray said Horsfield had been dependant on Class A drugs for a number of years and had witnessed a "very serious assault" that was initially investigated as an attempted murder.

He had given evidence in a trial that resulted in an assault conviction and was stabbed by others connected to the case who later tracked him down, she said.

Telling the court how the stabbing left Horsfield with post traumatic stress disorder, she added: "His life really unravelled from there on. He became alcohol dependent and stole things. His mental health suffered."

Judge Mushtaq Khokhar acknowledged Horsfield's personal issues but said anyone found with a bladed article in public was part of the wider concerns surrounding knife crime.

"There has to be a custodial sentence, not only to punish you but also to deter others," he added.

He sentenced Horsfield to 12 months in prison for the possession of the knife, with no further action for the second offence.