Maybe we could do an exchange and get some of our wet, crim hugging judges over there.
A businessman arrested on suspicion of murder after he stabbed a burglar to death was backed by a judge yesterday who said “it is natural to put up a fight’’.
Vincent Cooke, 39, was held after Raymond Jacob, 37, suffered knife wounds after he broke into Mr Cooke’s home in Bramhall, near Stockport, Greater Manchester, last September. Jacob held a knife to Mr Cooke’s throat and forced him to go to the study and kitchen in a search for jewellery and cash. When Mr Cooke’s wife Karen, 34, and son Anthony, 12, returned home, Mr Cooke seized a carving knife and repeatedly stabbed Jacob.
Mr Cooke, who said he acted in lawful self-defence, was questioned for 12 hours and released without charge. He was kept on bail for almost a month until he was told he would not be charged.
Jacob’s accomplice, Michael Thorpe, 33, of Heald Green, Manchester, was jailed for 10 years at Minshull Street Crown Court after admitting aggravated burglary.
The judge told Thorpe: “For anyone who lends themselves to an enterprise of this nature, it would be perfectly obvious that you would scare the victim with a knife by brandishing it and it was foreseeable that it might be used.
“It is natural to put up a fight, that is what happened in the kitchen, the complainant came upon a knife, not surprisingly in the kitchen, and sought to defend himself and his property and it was after that struggle between the two men that your accomplice was stabbed.’’