Man attacked his ‘friend’ after cider binge in flat

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A man who slit his friend’s throat in an unprovoked attack has been found guilty of attempted murder.

Steven Davis was convicted after a trial at Preston Crown Court.

The 34-year-old had denied the charge and had instead pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent to Patrick Bentley, his friend of five years, but he was found guilty yesterday.

Mr Bentley called to see Davis at his flat in Farringdon Crescent, 
Preston, at around teatime on August 10 last year.

He arrived with two bottles of cider and the pair sat side by side on the settee, drinking and chatting.

During the trial Mr Bentley, who was found slumped in a phone box after the attack, gave evidence to the court in which he said the pair had been friends for several years and would drink in Preston city centre together.

He said when he arrived at the flat Davis had been pleased to see him and welcomed him inside.

But shortly after 9pm Davis asked his friend to stand up so he could “see how tall he was”, then put his arm around his neck and slit his throat.”

Mr Bentley tried to flee but as he fumbled with the lock on the front door, Davis stabbed him a further two times to the abdomen, breaking through his denim jacket, football shirt and T-shirt with a serrated kitchen knife, which was later found discarded by the sink.

Today, Det Sgt Mike Riley, of Preston CID, said: “We are very pleased the jury has found Steven Davis guilty of attempted murder, we feel this verdict correctly reflects the seriousness of this case and the injuries sustained by the victim in this unprovoked attack.”

The victim suffered a deep wound to his neck, which was treated with 17 staples, and two knife wounds to his abdomen.

Earlier in the case the jurors heard a 999 call was made by Davis shortly after the incident in which he claimed his friend had arrived at his flat, already seriously injured.

He told a 999 operator he thought he had just “dealt with a dead body.”