Man jailed for road rage sword attack in Liverpool

Lenford Whyte Image copyright Merseyside Police

A man who stabbed a shopper with a samurai sword in a road rage attack has been jailed.

Lenford Whyte, 38, chased Jonathon Coulthurst, 36, after an argument at a Liverpool retail park on 22 August.

Mr Coulthurst, a rigger in the North Sea, now suffers physical problems and stress, Liverpool Crown Court heard.

Whyte, of Goswell Street, Liverpool, was jailed for five and a half years after admitting wounding, possessing a bladed article and criminal damage.

Image copyright Google
Image caption Shoppers at Liverpool's Hunts Cross Shopping Centre were horrified to see the attack

The court heard words were exchanged between the pair as Whyte's vehicle approached a junction behind a car driven by Mr Coulthurst's partner - with the couple's seven-year-old son in the back.

Both men stepped out of their vehicles and "pushing and shoving" took place outside the Hunts Cross Shopping Centre, the court heard.

CCTV footage captured Whyte collecting the sword, with a 2ft blade, from his boot and running towards Mr Coulthurst.

He waved the sword in front of members of the public before inflicting a wound in Mr Coulthurst's chest.

Whyte then drove off and later dumped the sword near a block of flats.

'Very sorry'

On sentencing, Judge Foster said: "It was clear that you are the aggressor in the conversation and in the altercation, and of course then escalated matters by getting a very intimidating weapon, which you wielded with menacing effect and eventually used it to jab - really stab - the complainant in the chest."

Paul Wood, defending, said Whyte, who suffers from a "recurrent depressive disorder", had been a victim of assault himself in the past.

He said his client accepted his actions were "foolish" and he was "very sorry" for the attack.

The defendant had problems with cannabis use but it was not suggested as a cause of the offence.