A MENTAL health patient left a care worker with a four centimetre scar after he slashed him across the face with razor blade.

Jason Phillips attacked the Roseberry Park Hospital worker just hours before the staff Christmas party because he believed the man was talking about him behind his back.

The 48-year-old had been staying on a locked ward at the psychiatric hospital in Middlesbrough for six months before he attacked the care worker with a razor blade in December 2017.

Teesside Crown Court heard the member of staff, who was left with a wound across the left side of his face which needed more than 20 stitches, will be permanently scarred.

Nicolette Alistari, prosecuting, said Phillips mistakenly believed the care worker spoke about him behind his back earlier that day and shouted "that’s for talking about me" as he slashed him across the face with the razor blade.

She said: “A minor incident happened at the beginning of his shift.

“He was talking about the company Amazon to his colleague and the defendant overheard the conversation and asked him to ‘stop talking about me’.

“Knowing this was not unusual, he explained he wasn’t talking about him and didn’t think anymore of it.”

But about an hour before he was due to finish his shift early to join his colleagues at the staff Christmas party, Phillips approached him for the second time and asked him for a razor which patients are allowed to use if they sign a register.

Quoting the victim, Ms Alistari said: “He approached me asking for a razor. This is standard and if a patient asks for one we sign it out and then sign it back in.

“Around 20 minutes later he approached me and said ‘here is the razor’. He handed it to me in his left arm and I went to take it from him.

"He then raised his right arm, I thought he was going to punch me.

“I didn’t feel anything at that point but I heard him say ‘that’s for talking about me’.

“I felt a warm sensation on my cheek. I felt it and looked at my hand and there was blood on it.

“I looked over to my colleague and she burst out crying. I knew something serious had happened and I stood there in shock.”

CCTV footage shown to the jury showed Phillips sitting on a sofa before approaching the man and lurching at him.

The victim is seen to clutch his face and two colleagues usher him into an office while Phillips walks away.

The court heard the members of staff locked themselves in the room, wrapped bandages across the victim's head and called the emergency services.

Quoting the victim, Ms Alistari added: “The wound ran from my temple to my chin on the left hand side. I had 21 stitches and was told I will be permanently scarred.”

The court ruled Phillips was not fit enough to enter a plea and he watched the hearing take place via a video link from Roseberry Park Hospital, where he remains as a patient.

He was detained under the mental health act and will remain in hospital under further notice.