Seven years for street stabbing

Antony Turner
Antony Turner

A THUG who stabbed a man in a street fight shortly after trying to smash his way into the victim’s home has been jailed for seven years.

Anthony Turner knifed Michael Stephenson twice in the back during the brawl in the West View area of Hartlepool.

Turner, 41, and pal Vincent Johnson went to the estate’s Brus Corner armed with long sticks just hours after Turner smashed the front windows of a family home nearby.

Turner and Johnson had gone to the house in Skelton Street on the afternoon of Friday, October 29 last year, where they wanted to fight with men at the property.

Teesside Crown Court heard that Turner shouted “get your geezers out here” before he smashed the front windows with a shovel.

Mr Stephenson, who lived at the house, and his partner’s brother, Andrew McLeod, arranged to meet Turner and Johnson after a series of phone calls to talk about why the attack happened.

Graeme Gaston, prosecuting, said Mr Stephenson and Mr McLeod were attacked when the defendants arrived carrying long sticks or bats.

Mr Gaston said: “Turner and Mr Stephenson exchanged blows. Mr Stephenson took what he thought were punches to his upper right body.

“He stepped back and felt blood and realised he had been stabbed.

“Turner said ‘there is more where that came from’.”

Mr Stephenson was bleeding heavily and staggered home before being taken to hospital.

He suffered a two-inch deep wound under his shoulder blade and a one-inch cut to his lower back.

Turner and Johnson were both arrested at a house in the town’s Warren Road the following morning.

Turner admitted drinking with Johnson the previous day but denied being involved in either of the incidents.

He was convicted of wounding with intent and affray after a trial last month.

Johnson, 43, had earlier admitted a public order offence and affray.

Ian West, mitigating for Turner, who is unemployed, said the stabbing fell into the lower sentencing guidelines as it was not clear that he planned in advance to use the knife.

Paul Cleasby, mitigating for Johnson, said his behaviour had been affected by a change in his medication and alcohol.

Mr Cleasby added: “This offence was very much out of character.”

Judge Tony Briggs described the pair’s behaviour as “disgraceful” and said the attack on the house was terrifying for the women and a child inside at the time.

Sentencing Turner, of Ridlington Way, Hartlepool, he said: “You were clearly prepared for violence.

“You were fortunate no serious injuries occurred. The facts speak for themselves.”

Johnson, of Marshall Close, Hartlepool, was jailed for 12 months, suspended for two years, with 12-months supervision and a three-month curfew between 10pm-6am.