Introduction — Sept 26, 2017
Cases like this really call into question the judgement of the judiciary. One wonders if the perpetrator was male he would have gotten off so lightly for what was, in effect, an attempted murder.
Either the judge was plain stupid or he wasn’t fully appraised of facts pertaining to this case. For it has now been revealed that the accused, Lavinia Woodward an aspiring medical student, loved wearing Sadomasochistic outfits and boasted of having attended group sex orgies.
She reportedly told friends: ‘I’m into some very kinky stuff’. She is also reported to have had a drug problem.
Yet the judge in this case allowed her to walk free because she was too “bright” for jail. Even though she broke bail conditions. One wonders whether a young man from a deprived background would have been accorded the same lenient consideration for a similar crime? Ed.
Lavinia Woodward: Oxford student ‘too bright’ for prison is spared jail for stabbing boyfriend
Harry Yorke — Telegraph.co.uk Sept 25, 2017
An Oxford medical student “too bright” to be given a prison sentence has been allowed to walk free from court – despite the judge acknowledging that she broke her bail conditions.
Lavinia Woodward, 24, who stabbed her Cambridge University boyfriend in the leg with a bread knife, was spared jail yesterday as she was commended for her “strong and unwavering determination” to address her drug addiction.
As she left the courtroom, Woodward was seen mouthing the words “thank you” to the judge as she was ushered out of the dock in tears by her family.
The decision was last night criticised by criminal justice campaigners, who said that the lenient ruling would deter men who had fallen victim to domestic abuse from coming forward.
It comes four months after Judge Ian Pringle QC described Woodward, an aspiring heart surgeon, as an “extraordinarily able young lady”, whose talents meant that a prison sentence would be “too severe”.
Standing trial in May, Woodward pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding, after she punched and stabbed Cambridge student Thomas Fairclough whilst under the influence of alcohol and drugs.
The court had heard that she had attacked Mr Fairclough, who she had met on the dating app Tinder when she discovered that he had contacted her mother when he realised she had been drinking.
Enraged, she was said to have thrown a laptop at him before stabbing him with a knife, also injuring two of his fingers. Woodward then tried to stab herself with the knife before he managed to disarm and restrain her.
However, Judge Pringle told the court that he would take an “exceptional course” and defer sentence, hinting that she would be spared prison so as not to damage her chances of becoming a surgeon.
Whilst awaiting sentence, Woodward then returned home to her mother’s villa in Milan, during which time she was seen shopping at fashion outlets whilst carrying a designer Chanel bag.
Resuming proceedings at Oxford Crown Court yesterday afternoon, Judge Pringle said that there had been “many, many mitigating features” in the case as he handed Woodward a 10-month jail sentence suspended for 18 months.
His comments followed pleas by Woodward’s legal counsel, James Sturman QC, that she be given a conditional discharge due to her “unique vulnerability, remorse and good character”.