Stabbing victim ordered to ‘beg’ by attacker

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A MAN who stabbed his friend more than 20 times in a “sustained and purposeful” knife attack in his own home has been detained under the Mental Health Act.

Martin Jowitt, 50, left victim David Edwards with wounds to his face, chest, neck and caused damage to his liver during the attack at the flat in Castleford.

Leeds Crown Court heard Jowitt has a long-standing “schizo-affective” mental health condition for which he had been receiving treatment for 20 years.

Shortly before the attack, on March 23 this year, his friends had noticed a deterioration in his condition.

Jonathan Sharp, prosecuting, said Jowitt had lived for many years with friend Stephen Micklethwaite at a property on Esther Road, Lupset, Wakefield.

Jowitt attacked Mr Micklethwaite on March 11 and was staying with Mr Edwards at Fulmar Road, Half Acres, Castleford, after being released on bail.

Mr Sharp said the two men had stayed up chatting on the night before the incident when Jowitt’s mood changed and he locked the door to the flat.

He told Mr Edwards that he could not leave the flat and that he was going to kill him.

Before the attack, Jowitt said: “I’m going to get this knife and kill you. I can’t stand you. Beg - it’s going to be murder.”

Jowitt then took a knife from the kitchen and carried out a “sustained and purposeful” attack. Mr Edwards tried to protect himself as he was stabbed in the face. Mr Sharp said he realised he would have to get out of the flat if he was going to survive and managed to get the keys from Jowitt as he continued to receive knife blows.

Mr Edwards got out of the property and raised the alarm. Jowitt was persuaded to drop the weapon by a neighbour. After the attack, Jowitt said: “I have stabbed my mate Dave because we had an argument and I hope he dies.”

Mr Edwards suffered life threatening injuries and underwent surgery at Pinderfields Hospital. Jowitt pleaded guilty to attempted murder. The court heard a bed was available for Jowitt at Newton Lodge secure unit, in Wakefield, where he can continue to receive treatment for his condition. Judge Guy Kearl, QC, ordered that Jowitt be detained indefinitely under the Mental Health Act.