Family and victim speak out over Portsmouth stabbing attacks

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ONE of the victims stabbed by a teenager who tried to murder three women in revenge for being a virgin has said she will be on her guard for the rest of her life.

The woman, 67, spoke to The News after Ben Moynihan was found guilty of three counts of attempted murder after he stabbed women in Portsmouth last summer.

STABBING COSHAM   (RS & CF)     MRW   11/7/2014  ''Scene of Crime Officers together with detectives and uniformed Police Officers at the scene of a crime in a pathway that goes between Northern Road in Cosham and Colwell Road Cosham 'Detectives made house-to-house enquiries as other officers checked bins, drains and garden areas ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142041-0529) PPP-141107-221804003

STABBING COSHAM (RS & CF) MRW 11/7/2014 ''Scene of Crime Officers together with detectives and uniformed Police Officers at the scene of a crime in a pathway that goes between Northern Road in Cosham and Colwell Road Cosham 'Detectives made house-to-house enquiries as other officers checked bins, drains and garden areas ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142041-0529) PPP-141107-221804003

She said: ‘When I look every time I’m in the shower I think, “my god”. It’s just frightening.

‘For six months I didn’t go out. I’m always looking over my shoulder and I will be for the rest of my life.’

She was the final victim to be targeted by Moynihan, 18, as she walked in an alleyway between Northern Road and Colwell Road in Cosham on July 11. Each victim was picked at random.

His first victims, 20 and 45, were attacked on June 20 and 29. All three suffered a single stab wound to the breast that was described as superficial.

STABBING COSHAM   (RS & CF)     MRW   11/7/2014  ''Scene of Crime Officers together with detectives and uniformed Police Officers at the scene of a crime in a pathway that goes between Northern Road in Cosham and Colwell Road Cosham 'Detectives made house-to-house enquiries as other officers checked bins, drains and garden areas ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142041-0398) PPP-141107-222116003

STABBING COSHAM (RS & CF) MRW 11/7/2014 ''Scene of Crime Officers together with detectives and uniformed Police Officers at the scene of a crime in a pathway that goes between Northern Road in Cosham and Colwell Road Cosham 'Detectives made house-to-house enquiries as other officers checked bins, drains and garden areas ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142041-0398) PPP-141107-222116003

The News can reveal Moynihan told detectives his mother asked him if he was involved in the stabbings and made him swear he was not.

Winchester Crown Court heard he told officers: ‘She made me swear on everything I love that I didn’t do it just after the first stabbing.’

Giving evidence Moynihan said his mother found an early draft of a letter to police in which he called himself the Sussex slayer – as he originally planned to carry out the attacks in that county.

But he said he destroyed the copies she found at his home in The Ridings, Hilsea.

STABBING COSHAM   (RS & CF)     MRW   11/7/2014  ''Scene of Crime Officers together with detectives and uniformed Police Officers at the scene of a crime in a pathway that goes between Northern Road in Cosham and Colwell Road Cosham 'Detectives made house-to-house enquiries as other officers checked bins, drains and garden areas ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142041-0476) PPP-141107-221845003

STABBING COSHAM (RS & CF) MRW 11/7/2014 ''Scene of Crime Officers together with detectives and uniformed Police Officers at the scene of a crime in a pathway that goes between Northern Road in Cosham and Colwell Road Cosham 'Detectives made house-to-house enquiries as other officers checked bins, drains and garden areas ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142041-0476) PPP-141107-221845003

He told officers he wanted to be locked up for 10 years as he thought his mother could not afford to look after him.

Moynihan, who said he practised using the knife by stabbing an old jacket, also told how a friend was suspicious of him being involved.

Seven days before the first attack he recorded a video of himself waving a knife saying he was targeting women because he was a virgin.

Speaking to The News his father Keiren Moynihan, 44, said: ‘Seeing the video has been very hard. We want Ben to get the help that he needs.

STABBING COSHAM   (RS & CF)     MRW   11/7/2014  ''Scene of Crime Officers together with detectives and uniformed Police Officers at the scene of a crime in a pathway that goes between Northern Road in Cosham and Colwell Road Cosham 'Detectives made house-to-house enquiries as other officers checked bins, drains and garden areas ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142041-0459) PPP-141107-221909003

STABBING COSHAM (RS & CF) MRW 11/7/2014 ''Scene of Crime Officers together with detectives and uniformed Police Officers at the scene of a crime in a pathway that goes between Northern Road in Cosham and Colwell Road Cosham 'Detectives made house-to-house enquiries as other officers checked bins, drains and garden areas ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142041-0459) PPP-141107-221909003

His stepmother added: ‘We support Ben because he’s our boy. We don’t condone what he’s done.’

In the dock Moynihan stood nodding and glancing around the courtroom as The Hon Mr Justice Robert Jay explained he had been found guilty and remanded him in custody.

Earlier in the six-day trial jurors heard Moynihan looked up serial killer Dennis Nilsen and Moors murderer Ian Brady. The South Downs College catering student had told police at interview he almost stabbed more women.

He said: ‘Those three times weren’t the only times I took the knife out. I just had no luck in finding victims.

‘I had a few close shaves but at the last moment something would prevent me.’

He said he would wait until his mother was out and then hide a knife up his sleeve making sure it could not bend or buckle. He did so up to 10 times, he claimed.

When he was stopped by officers in a van who spotted him on July 13 at Portsbridge Roundabout two days after the third attack, he confessed.

Jurors saw body-worn video footage of the teenager saying: ‘Yeah, I confess to the stabbings. You was lucky, I was hunting for my fourth.’

Police removed a knife from his sleeve, arrested him and put him in a police van before he was taken to Portsmouth Central police station.

PC Alison Rouse told the court that at the station Moynihan interrupted her when she said he was arrested for GBH, saying: ‘It wasn’t GBH, I intended to kill them.’

But speaking from the witness box he told jurors that he exaggerated and lied to police so he would be charged with attempted murder.

Alastair Malcolm QC, defending, said it was fantasy.

He said: ‘He hadn’t got anywhere near killing anybody. He had never done anything more than one stab.’

Moynihan’s defence team claimed that the attacks were prompted after he saw two men burgle the garage at his family home.

He put a television in the middle of Western Road near the Lakeside business park after witnessing the burglary.

In court he said: ‘I wanted to get my own back on someone else but they weren’t the burglars. I had a little plan to spoil someone else’s evening.’

But prosecutor Kerry Maylin said Moynihan had written a letter addressed to police back in March, pre-dating the first stabbing. She said: ‘The burglary is nothing to do with stabbing women.’

Moynihan, who has autistic spectrum disorder, said: ‘It was the main trigger.’

The teenager, who was 17 at the time, denied there was a sexual element.

The judge adjourned the case for a pre-sentence report to be written that will include psychiatric assessments. He indicated he could adopt a starting point of 15 years in prison as punishment.

A hospital order will also be considered by the judge.

Det Insp Liam Davies praised the victims’ courage. He said: ‘The violence inflicted on them was particularly distressing as it was completely unexpected.’

Outside court Ms Maylin said: ‘It is very disturbing to think that a 17-year-old boy would write on a college computer how he would, 11 weeks later carry out attacks on women as an act of revenge against them.’

‘I thought he punched me at first. My body was shaking’

JURORS heard the harrowing moments victims called 999 after they were stabbed in random attacks.

Prosecutor Kerry Maylin played the calls at Winchester Crown Court where Moynihan was charged with attempted murder over stabbings in Portsmouth last summer.

In the first 999 call the 20-year-old victim was heard crying and breathing quickly after she attacked in Southampton Road near a bus stop.

She told the operator: ‘I’ve just been stabbed, I’ve just been stabbed. There’s blood coming out. Some man just walked up behind me and just stabbed me and then ran.’

In a police video interview played in court, she explained she was walking to her partner’s house.

She said she glanced at the attacker as he drew close on Southampton Road near a bus stop on June 20, and then looked down at her phone, before he flung his arm at her.

‘I thought he had punched me at first,’ she said. ‘My whole body started shaking, I felt really faint.’

The second victim, 45, told how she said ‘good morning’ to her attacker when out walking her dog in a dark and secluded part of Foxes Forest, Hilsea, right, on June 29. Her 999 call was also heard in court in which she repeatedly said: ‘I’ve been stabbed.’

In her police interview she said she thought she was about to be groped.

She added: ‘I thought “it’s going to be a sexual attack”. His left arm went behind me. I didn’t see the knife until he went past me.

The last victim told how she thought she had been touched before seeing blood. She did not call 999.

The 67-year-old said: ‘I heard somebody running. He touched me on the shoulder. I looked down and thought “that’s blood, he stabbed me”.’

Coverage of the trial

Portsmouth stabbings trial: Teenager found guilty of attempted murder

Portsmouth stabbings trial: Teenager’s claim he wanted to kill women was ‘just a fantasy’

Portsmouth stabbings trial: Defendant tells court he lied to police

Accused Portsmouth teenager ‘stabbed women to death in a video game’

Solidarity walk in Portsmouth after stabbing inspired teenager accused of attempted murder

‘Those three were not the only times I took out a knife - I had it out ready’

Teenager stabbed women because he ‘felt worthless’

Portsmouth attacks trial hears defendant told police: ‘Yeah, I confess to the stabbings.’

‘I looked down and there was blood... he had stabbed me’

Portsmouth stab victims tell court of attacks in attempted murder trial

Stabbing accused said he looked for ‘blood and pain’

Court told teenager stabbed women ‘because he could not lose his virginity’