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Ferryhill stab victim: Attacker has ruined my life
A STAB victim, who saw his attacker walk free from court despite inflicting horrifying wounds on him, says his life has been ruined.
Paul Hutchinson was stabbed six times and now suffers terrifying nightmares.
The once outgoing 30-year-old has become a recluse since he was attacked by William Wetherall on a busy market day in Ferryhill, County Durham.
Together with his partner, Amy Puckrin, Mr Hutchinson has now set up the Facebook page 'Help Us Get Justice For Stab Victim'.
It attracted about 500 ‘friends’ in its first 24 hours as well as the support of prominent anti-knife campaigner, Theresa Cave.
Speaking on Mr Hutchinson’s behalf, as he is still too traumatised to speak publicly, Miss Puckrin said the sentence given to his attacker this week was too lenient.
Wetherall, a 65-year-old former soldier who carried a lock knife “for protection”, pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding and was sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for 18 months.
At Durham Crown Court he admitted that he over-reacted on seeing two younger men apparently chasing someone following an argument in the town centre on a September morning last year.
He used the knife to stab Mr Hutchinson six times in the back, causing a punctured lung that needed urgent surgery.
Miss Puckrin, 25, said the wounds were not only skin deep, but had had a lasting impact on her boyfriend.
“This has ruined his life," she said. "He used to go out every single night before this happened, but now he is a hermit.
“The nightmares he has are horrendous. As well as the night sweats, he wakes up after pushing me against the wall with his feet.
"He can’t lift a bag of sugar because of the pain and I can’t even touch his back as it gives him shooting pins and needles. “
The couple, who live in Ferryhill, said the sentence imposed by Judge Brian Forster had left them “very angry”.
“This man was an ex-soldier, he should have been made an example of,” Miss Puckrin said.
Theresa Cave, whose son Chris was stabbed to death in Redcar almost ten years ago, said she would fight alongside the couple as they sought to have the sentence increased.
“The judge needs a reality check, he wants to hang his head in shame,” she said. “It is an unduly lenient sentence for the crime that was committed.
"Anti-knife campaigners around the country have been shocked by this.
“The Attorney General will be written to, as will Home Secretary, Theresa May. It is absolutely disgusting.”