Man jailed for wounding - Aylesbury

14/09/2015

A man appeared at Reading Crown Court today, Monday, 14 September 2015, and was jailed for 15 years and given an extended sentence of five years after stabbing a man in the neck in Aylesbury causing life-changing injuries.

David Clarke, aged 64, of no fixed abode, was sentenced after being found guilty on 11 May 2015, of Section 18 wounding with intent, by a jury following a 5-day trial.  He was acquitted of one count of attempted murder.

On 08 September 2014, Clarke purchased a knife from a hardware shop in Aylesbury.  At 2.20pm on the same day he entered Babs Food and Wine store in Buckingham Street, Aylesbury where he asked the victim, 25-year-old shop assistant Rushatharan Asok for assistance.

While Mr Asok was leaning forwards to help Clarke, Clarke stabbed him the neck before leaving the shop.

Clarke was arrested on the same day and charged with the offence on 10 September 2014.

Adrian Foster, Chief Crown Prosecutor for Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said: "This case involved the stabbing of a 25-year-old man in Aylesbury on 08 September 2014, causing severe, life threatening injuries and extreme loss of blood, which could have had far worse consequences.

"The victim was attacked while innocently working in a convenience store in Aylesbury.  David Clarke purchased a kitchen knife from a nearby shop, and about three hours later, entered the convenience store and engaged the victim in conversation before brutally plunging the knife into the side of the victim's neck and then leaving the store. The prompt actions of two young women, who entered the shop as Clarke was leaving, resulted in the victim receiving swift medical attention.

"The victim has been left with life changing injuries, is unable to carry out basic everyday tasks and is expected to have significant ongoing disability, which will require long term, around the clock care and support.  This was a completely unjustified, unprovoked, planned and premeditated attack.  Clarke is clearly a very dangerous man.

"Clarke answered 'no comment' in three police interviews and denied any wrongdoing, but was found guilty, by a jury, of wounding with intent on Monday, 11 May 2015, after a five-day trial despite his denials. He was found not guilty of attempted murder.

"We have worked closely with Thames Valley Police since this investigation was launched and as a result of the hard work and diligence of the prosecution team, a just outcome has been achieved.

"This case represents a tragedy for the victim, and his family, who are devastated by his life changing injuries and the effect they are having on his quality of life.  Understandably, the events on that day have had a significant impact on the victim both physically and psychologically.  I hope that the conviction and today's sentence will in some way help him to come to terms with the horrifying events with the knowledge that the man that subjected him to his terrible ordeal has been brought to justice. Our thoughts are very much with him and his family at this time."

Senior investigating officer Detective Chief Inspector Mark Glover, from Thames Valley Police's Major Crime Unit, said: "Clarke stabbed Rushatharan, who he had never met before, in a short, violent and unprovoked attack in a shop in Aylesbury.

"I would like to thank local people in Aylesbury for their patience while we conducted the investigation and I would like to reassure people within the community that incidents of this nature are extremely rare. However, when they do occur Thames Valley Police makes every effort  to conduct a thorough investigation and to bring perpetrators to justice, as we have done in this case with Clarke.

"The events of 8 September 2014 resulted in Mr Asok sustaining injuries which will forever affect his life and the quality of life of his family due to the ongoing care he requires.

"The court recognised what a dangerous offender Clarke is. I hope today's sentence will enable Rushatharan and his family to move on to the next chapter of their lives, although I am sure the lasting physical and emotional impact of this attack will never leave them."