Bristol

Woman detained indefinitely for stabbing boy

A woman who admitted repeatedly stabbing a nine-year-old boy with a knife has been detained indefinitely in a psychiatric hospital.

Clare Martin, 49, from Edgeworth near Bristol, crept up behind her victim and stabbed him in the back and abdomen.

The boy, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, sustained serious injuries to his liver and kidneys.

At an earlier hearing at Bristol Crown Court, Martin pleaded guilty to a charge of attempted murder.

'You're going to die'

The court was told the boy was recovering from the injuries he sustained in the attack on 4 November 2010, but was likely to face further surgery in the future.

Recalling the stabbing, the boy told police he felt "something touching my back".

"Then she pushed me and stabbed me. She kept stabbing me. All she kept saying was: 'You're going to die'.

"All I can remember was pain everywhere. I was trying to get her away. She was using force to pin me down."

Virginia Cornwall, defending, said three psychiatrists had found that Martin was suffering from mental illness at the time of the attack.

She said: "The unbearable guilt she has is real as is the self-loathing.

"There is nothing I can say that can mitigate what she did."

Judge Neil Ford QC ordered that Martin be detained indefinitely for the protection of the public.

"Your stabbing of the boy was repeated and violent," he said.

"You stabbed him many times to his chest, back and front, and abdomen and you stabbed him with the intention of taking his life.

"As a result of that he suffered life-threatening injuries and it was only the expertise of a team of surgeons that saved his life.

"There is no doubt at all in my mind that you need to be detained for a very long time in a secure setting."

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