Meat cleaver ‘flailing’ thug sent to prison after severing boy’s fingers in self defence

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A THUG who severed a boy’s fingers with a meat cleaver has been jailed after going on to threaten the boy’s pals with the blade.

Kevin Penman was acquitted by a jury of causing grievous bodily harm with intent after severing two fingers of the 17-year-old’s hand in Copnor Takeaway, in Copnor Road, Portsmouth, on May 19 this year.

Copnor Takeaway in Copnor Road was shut off by police on May 20

Copnor Takeaway in Copnor Road was shut off by police on May 20

The boy, who gave evidence at Penman’s trial at Portsmouth Crown Court, needed six hours of reconstructive surgery.

Despite being cleared of the serious assault Penman, 26, was convicted of affray and possession of an offensive weapon after chasing the group.

Penman, who had been out getting drunk, had shouted ‘I am going to kill them all,’ a witness at the trial said.

Sentencing Penman to two years and six months in prison, judge Linda Sullivan QC said: ‘You knew what you had done, in spite of that, although your family home was close by, you then start about flailing this meat cleaver in front of other people.

‘I heard evidence from people terrified because of what you were doing.

‘I’m properly satisfied you were waving it about in a threatening way and there was a chance that someone else could have been seriously injured in that way the boy was in the Chinese takeaway.

‘I accept that you were chased and were fearful and as such went into the Chinese takeaway.’

But she added: ‘You chose to go out in the street and flail that meat cleaver around threatening others with it and the risk of something similar happening was grave.

‘You said you were being chased but the CCTV makes it plain you were going toward a group of people who were not part of that attack.

‘I don’t accept that the self defence was the reason for your (later) behaviour that night.’

The trial heard the incident took place between 11.15pm and 11.50pm when Penman, of Copnor Road, had been chased before going into the takeaway, picking up the meat cleaver and lashing out in self defence. He was convicted for his acts after that.

Jeffrey Lamb, mitigating, said: ‘The individual and particular circumstance of these offences were that he was in real and substantial fear for himself and his partner.’

He added: ‘This is not a case where someone has gone out with a weapon in order to commit and affray.’

He urged the judge to impose a sentence that would see Penman, who had served five and a half months on remand – equivalent to an 11-month sentence, released immediately.

Penman, who has a history of convictions relating to disorderly behaviour, earlier admitted having cannabis, a class B drug but received no separate penalty.