A man was jailed for 52 months today (Monday, January 17) for stabbing a teenager in front of shoppers in Watford High Street.
O’Dean Boothe (pictured) , now 22, pulled out a blade and lunged at the 19-year-old at a quarter to five in the afternoon on Friday, February 7 last year.
Prosecutor James Murray-Smith told St Albans Crown Court: “We don’t know what the weapon was – it was a blade of some sort.”
He said the victim suffered a deliberate stab wound to the upper left chest.
He was rushed to hospital and treated for a punctured lung. He was able to leave hospital the next day.
Boothe attacked the victim, who was riding his bike, outside the McDonald’s.
In retaliation, the victim threw a chair at the defendant, who then ran from the scene to a waiting BMW in Smith Street.
The victim – who was aged 19 at the time – was bleeding heavily, but managed to get himself to a nearby convenience store to ask for help before he collapsed.
The emergency services were called and the police officers first on scene were able to administer lifesaving first aid.
Paramedics and the air ambulance team arrived soon after and the victim was flown to a London hospital for further treatment.
Boothe, of White Hart Lane, Tottenham, was convicted by a jury last week of wounding with intent, having pleaded guilty to possessing cannabis.
He had three previous convictions for five offences, including possessing a meat cleaver in a public place five years ago when he was a youth.
Defending, Susan Wright said Boothe showed a “lack of maturity.” She said he took responsibility for the injury and was sorry.
Judge Michael Simon told him: “You knew perfectly well you were carrying a knife with no good reason.
“This was in the middle of the afternoon in the centre of Watford with a large number of people around, any number of whom could have become caught up.”
After the case Detective Constable Jon Holmes said: “It is no exaggeration when I say that the victim is lucky to be alive today, and we could have easily been investigating a murder.
“This was a very serious incident and Boothe gave absolutely no thought to the potential consequences of using a knife to viciously stab the victim in the chest.
“It has taken a long time to get to this point due to the coronavirus pandemic putting a huge strain on the court system, but I am pleased for the victim, his family and the wider public that we have finally achieved a conviction in this case.
“We will always do everything we can to reduce violent crime in Hertfordshire and this case is a perfect example of what would-be offenders could expect to face once arrested and charged.”
Elected Mayor of Watford, Peter Taylor, said: “There is no place in our town for knife crime. I am grateful to the police for their work on this case and for securing this sentence.
“Fortunately, incidents such as these are rare in our community. We must ensure people are educated about knife crime and that we do all we can to prevent more incidents in Watford.”