Hartlepool knife thug jailed for seven and a half years after stabbing that destroyed teenager’s life

Dwayne Turner
Dwayne Turner

A teenager was left fighting for life in a coma for six weeks after he was stabbed at a party in Hartlepool.

Victim Steven Lever, 19, suffered devastating consequences after Dwayne Turner, 24, knifed him in the abdomen after a confrontation at a house party in Brafferton Street, on January 29.

Prior to being stabbed I was in the process of joining the army. I no longer know what the future holds.

Steven Lever

Turner, who had taken ecstasy, was jailed for seven and a half years at Teesside Crown Court on his birthday yesterday after a judge said he was a danger to the public.

Mr Lever needed emergency surgery and was in hospital for 10 weeks, seven of them in intensive care and six weeks in an induced coma after complications from an infection.

In a victim impact statement Mr Lever said: “I would like Turner to know that he has destroyed my life as I know it.

“Prior to being stabbed I was in the process of joining the Army. I no longer know what the future holds.”

Jenny Haigh, prosecuting, said there had been a confrontation between Mr Lever and Turner at the party.

A few minutes later Mr Lever, who said he did not want to fight Turner, was persuaded to go outside to talk to him.

Ms Haigh said: “The defendant came towards him and he thought he was going to shake his hand. The defendant said ‘I don’t know who you think you are’ then stabbed him to the left side of his body. Mr Lever hadn’t seen the knife until after he stabbed him.”

Turner lunged at him again and ran after Mr Lever for a short time. He banged on a stranger’s door for help and was taken to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough.

Mr Lever was left in a wheelchair for months after his release from hospital and will need another operation to his bowel next year.

Turner, of Friendship Lane, Hartlepool, admitted wounding with intent.

Stephen Constantine, mitigating, said: “He tells me he is shocked at the ferocity of his behaviour and he’s appalled at the result. Most certainly if he could turn the clock back he would.”

Judge Simon Phillips said: “What you did to him on that day was life changing for him and his family. You pose a very high risk of harm to the general public.”