Kettering man jailed for attack on former partner

Steven Earle
Steven Earle

A man has been jailed for more than six years after stabbing his ex-partner in an unprovoked assault.

Steven Earle, of Greenbank Avenue, Kettering, admitted wounding with intent in August.

Northampton Crown Court was told on Tuesday he attacked Cheryl Thrower at the home they had previously shared, despite having been on good terms with her since the break-up.

They had been partners for six years, and worked together at a residential care home for the elderly in Kettering.

But as Miss Thrower went to make coffee in the kitchen on Wednesday, August 28, Earle attacked her with a small weapon, which she believed was a potato peeler.

Almost immediately after the assault the 53-year-old dialled 999 himself, calling an ambulance for Miss Thrower and telling police they could find him at a community centre in the town.

Neil Bannister, prosecuting, said Earle first stabbed Miss Thrower in the lower back area before another stab punctured her abdomen.

Mr Bannister said: “She grabbed a kitchen towel as she was starting to bleed quite heavily. Police noticed a great deal of blood on the carpet.

“The defendant called the police and he made admissions as to stabbing his partner. He said he just snapped.”

Miss Thrower was taken to Walsgrave Hospital in Coventry suffering mostly superficial stab wounds but also one which caused a small laceration to her kidney.

She was discharged four days later. Mr Bannister said there was no indication any life-threatening injuries had been caused.

Earle, who was described in character references as “hard-working, reliable and honest” and who had no previous convictions, was jailed for six years and four months by Judge Rupert Mayo.

The court had been told the case did not bear the usual hallmarks of a domestic violence case, and the attack had not been premeditated.

Judge Mayo said: “You have admitted a serious assault on your partner of six years. You used a weapon to inflict these injuries.

“While short-lived, this was a sustained and repeated assault on the same person.”

Earle was given credit by the judge for his guilty plea, for having led a “useful life” in bringing up his two children on his own, for the remorse shown and for calling the emergency services himself.

The court heard Earle had also already signed up to listener and victim awareness schemes while on remand.

He will serve up to half the sentence in custody before being released on licence.