Policeman relives stabbing

PUBLISHED: 16:05 30 May 2002 | UPDATED: 12:01 03 March 2010

AN IPSWICH policeman relived the moments he was stabbed with a kitchen knife as he entered the back gate of a restaurant to investigate a suspected burglary.

AN IPSWICH policeman relived the moment he was stabbed with a kitchen knife as he entered the back gate of a restaurant to investigate a suspected burglary.

Pc Anthony Owens told a jury at Ipswich Crown Court the knife blow to the right side of his chest was so powerful he fell backwards on to the ground.

Restaurant worker Christopher Andrews, 42, of Christchurch Street, Ipswich, denies wounding 29-year-old Mr Owens with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

The alleged incident took place in the early hours of February 20 while Mr Owens was on duty in Ipswich town centre.

William Carter, prosecuting, told the court Mr Owens was driving alone in a marked police car when he received a radio call about 3am which related to a burglar alarm sounding at the Mexi Mix restaurant in St Helens Street.

Mr Carter said the police officer arrived alone at the rear of the premises having agreed with two colleagues they would investigate the front entrance.

The prosecutor told the court as Mr Owens fumbled to open a back gate in the dark, he caught a glint of a pair of spectacles.

Giving evidence yesterday, Mr Owens told the court: "By the time I'd recognised the pair of spectacles in front of me I was feeling a thump to the right side of my chest. I felt I had been punched.

"I believe as I was falling to the ground I saw a glint of a metal object. I thought it was a knife, but I couldn't be sure. I knew I was bleeding.

"Fearing I was going to be attacked again, I tried to draw my baton."

Mr Owens was taken to Ipswich Hospital, where doctors discovered a single slash wound to his chest, which had cut through to his muscle.

However, his injuries were not life-threatening and he was released from hospital the next day.

Mr Carter told the court Mexi Mix worker Andrews had closed the premises as usual on the night of the alleged incident and had stayed to clear up.

The prosecutor told the court that some time around 3am, Andrews had been disturbed by a loud noise coming from the flat roof above the restaurant kitchen.

He made a 999 call before picking up a kitchen knife and then left the building at the rear.

In police interviews, Andrews said he had picked up the knife "just in case", thinking he would shout a warning to leave him alone if he came across someone.

He told police he had absolutely no intention of going outside and stabbing someone and described it as a "tragic accident".

The trial continues.

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