Two men receive total of 27 years for attempted murder in The Downs

Crime / Thu 25th Jan 2018 at 03:41pm


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TWO men involved in the attempted murder of a man in The Downs area of Harlow in January last year, have been sentenced to a total of 27 years at Chelmsford Crown Court today (Thursday).

Charlie Knight, 20, formerly of Broadgate in Sutton St, Edmund, Spalding, Lincolnshire and Osa Francis Akpata, 20, formerly of Northgate End, Bishop’s Stortford, were sentenced to the following:

Judge David Turner gave Akpata a sentence of 16 years (13 in custody and three on licence).
He gave Knight a sentence of 11 and a half years (8 and a half in custody, three on licence).

Knight appeared in person. Akpata appeared on video link at Belmarsh Prison.

Judge Turner listened to background reports on both men which detailed troubled lives.

Knight had 24 convictions, most of which involved violence. He had spent much of his life in care.

Akpata had 25 convictions for battery and drug possession. The court also heard that he was in the top security wing of Belmarsh Prison as he had been “violent in prison”.

Likewise, he had a troubled life, in care and had failed to engage with “education, employment and his own emotional problems”.

In sentencing, the Judge described the attempted murder as “A cowardly, vicious and sickening attack…that left Mr Sommerville in hospital for three weeks with stab wounds and a punctured lung.”

The court heard Mr Somerville had received thirteen blows from a hammer (Knight) and a screwdriver (Akpata).

Judge Turner explained that he was aware of their age but also the gravity of the crime: “You attempted to murder Mr Somerville.”

Knight had pled guilty to wounding Robert Sommerville a few weeks before the trial in September began.

Akpata had pled not guilty, reasoning that he was not there at the time. The jury did not believe his elaborate alibi.

Back in September, jury of six men and six women returned a unanimous verdict at Chelmsford Crown Court

Both men reacted impassively as the sentence was read out.

Investigating officer Detective Constable Richard Canning, from Harlow CID, said: “This was a brutal and premeditated attack that left the victim with some really serious injuries.

“The ferocity with which Osa Akpata and Charlie Knight attacked the victim, and the fact it took place in broad daylight in a public place, is shocking and I am pleased we’ve been able to bring them to justice.

“They are two dangerous individuals who appear to have few qualms about using extreme violence.

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