Samurai sword attacker could face life in jail

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A KNARESBOROUGH man who attacked two New Year’s Eve party guests with a Samurai sword is behind bars awaiting sentence.

Kenneth Stewart Wilcock, 31, pleaded guilty to charges of wounding Benjamin Hodgson and Richard Watts with intent, a crime that carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

The attack took place on Inman Walk in Knaresborough.

One of the victims needed emergency treatment at Harrogate Hospital after Wilcock slashed his arm. The other needed surgery at York Hospital after Wilcock cut his face with the sword. Both began the new year in hospital.

Prosecuting, Simon Perkins told York Crown Court the defence team asserted Mr Hodgson and Mr Watts were part of a group that Wilcock threw out of his house because they were with an “unwelcome guest”.

They and others returned and started causing trouble at Wilcock’s front door. He reacted by losing his temper and attacking them with the sword.

The Crown Prosecution Service will now consider the defence team claims, and if it accepts them, Wilcock will be sentenced on May 12.

The probation service was ordered to prepare a report on him and assess the danger he poses to society in general. Wilcock was remanded in custody. He did not apply for bail.