News 17 May 2017
Author: Marisa Lee

Oxford student spared jail after stabbing boyfriend due to “extraordinary” talent

Author Marisa Lee
17 May 2017

Knife crime in London is so widely spoken about these days, almost everyone knows the problem that exists within young people stabbing each other and if caught committing the crime, being on the receiving end of a lengthy prison sentence and media vilification.

Apparently not if you’re a white, female, Oxford student.

Aspiring heart surgeon Lavinia Woodward stabbed her Cambridge student boyfriend in the leg after punching him in the face during a drunk argument at Christ Church College. The 24-year-old then threw a laptop, glass and jam jar at him during the attack in September last year.

Judge Ian Pringle QC told Oxford crown court that he would take an “exceptional” course and defer her sentence for four months, suggesting that Woodward will not be jailed due to her talent and potential. He said she would be allowed to return in October because she “is that bright” and has had articles published in medical journals.

“It seems to me that if this was a one-off, a complete one-off, to prevent this extraordinary able young lady from not following her long-held desire to enter the profession she wishes to would be a sentence which would be too severe,” the courts heard.

He went on, “What you did will never, I know, leave you, but it was pretty awful, and normally it would attract a custodial sentence, whether it is immediate or suspended.”

Defending James Sturman said Woodward’s dreams of becoming a surgeon would be “almost impossible” as her conviction would have to be disclosed to coworkers and patients.

She is set to be sentenced on the 25th of September and in the mean time has got away with a restraining order and told to stay drug-free.