Enraged woman stabbed 'ex' seven times following 'incendiary' text message

The Northern Echo: Michelle Hopper Michelle Hopper

AN enraged woman, seething at a text message from her former partner, armed herself with two knives before repeatedly stabbing him in the chest at his home.

Michelle Hopper discarded the knives as she drove from the house and handed herself in at a police station, confessing what she had done, telling the officers she had, “killed him”.

But Durham Crown Court heard the heavily bleeding victim managed to text his brother who alerted the emergency services.

Paramedics treated him at home before he was taken to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary, suffering seven stab wounds to the chest.

He spent three days at the hospital, but the wounds proved superficial and “non-life threatening”.

Hopper, 28, who admitted wounding with intent and criminal damage, was today (Friday, May 17) jailed for six years and nine months.

The court heard she reacted after a particularly divisive exchange of text messages with her ex-partner during an acrimonious end to their 18-month relationship, on February 15.

Paul Newcombe, prosecuting, said: “The messages were unpleasant and, perhaps, incendiary in nature, from both sides, it may be said.

“But a comment which she said made her ‘blow her stack’ was one in which he said he wished her son was dead.

“She later told police this was the final straw.”

Mr Newcombe said Hopper ended a shopping trip with a cousin, borrowed her car and drove home from the MetroCentre, changing clothes and arming herself with the kitchen knives.

She then drove to her ex-partner’s home, in Castleside, near Consett, knocked at the door and, when he answered, barged in, knocking him against the staircase.

Hopper then produced the knives from her sleeves and used both to inflict the wounds.

Seeing the extent of the bleeding she left and threw a rock smashing a door panel window as a parting shot.

Mr Newcombe said on confessing at the police station she told officers it was not necessary to swab her hands as she had been wearing gloves, “reflecting an element of pre-meditation”.

The court heard the injuries have had a “significant effect” on the 31-year-old victim, who has remained housebound during his recovery and unable to attend a course to progress his job as a health and safety officer.

Mr Newcombe said Hopper, of Spiro Court, Consett, has two previous cautions for assault and one conviction for a campaign of harassment against her family, for which she received a community order last November.

Julian White, mitigating, said Hopper was “brutally frank” telling police she intended to harm him, but not to kill her ex-partner.

He told the court she has suffered emotional and psychological problems from her teenage years, having been the victim of a nasty attack herself, and the hurtful text was the “catalyst” for this incident.

Jailing her, Judge Simon Hickey told Hopper there was “significant pre-meditation” and although some element of provocation she had time to calm down prior to carrying out the attack.

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