A Watford man has today been sentenced for 20 years for chopping a teenager’s hand off with a machete in a late-night attack in Abbots Langley.
Che Ambe, 21, rained six or seven blows at his victim, Tyler Stevens who laid curled up on a grass verge in Long Elms, Abbots, in February this year.
When the savage attack stopped Tyler, then 18, realised his injuries and made his way to a friend’s house while Ambe fled on a moped.
He told his friend, “Che’s chopped my hand off”.
The victim’s hand was later found by emergency services at the scene and despite surgeons’ best efforts, they weren’t able to reattach his hand.
Judge Michael Kay QC sentenced him to 15 years in jail – with an extension of 5 years, meaning he could be recalled to jail on his release any time upto 2039.
Another officer found a knife on the opposite side of the road, which was not the one used to attack Tyler Stevens, but was one the victim said he was carrying for his own protection as he knew Ambe was after him and what he was capable of.
Tyler Stevens was to tell the police that the recovered knife must have fallen from the waistband of his trousers as his ran.
Che Ambe, who was wearing body armour, was spotted afterwards on a moped and was arrested after the police deployed a ‘stinger,’ which punctured its tyres.
The prosecutor said that when questioned the next day, Che Ambe said he was not there.
The victim still suffers from nightmares about the attack.
Jailing Ambe, Judge Michael Kay QC told him: “What lay behind what occurred is still obscure – at the trial we learned you and your group of friends did not get on with his group of friends.
“Tyler Stevens knew you were coming for him. He said he had a knife because he knew what you were capable off.
“You went straight for him. His first reaction was to run from you. He slipped and fell.
“You continued pursue him and you had with you a weapon. It had to be a very substantial weapon, which was very sharp. You hit him a number of times with that weapon. One of these blows severed his left hand completely. This must have been a large machete.
“Tyler Stevens is left with a life-changing injury. It is evident how his life has changed. He still lives in fear of attack, not by you, but by your associates. He has moved from the area. He needs assistance with daily tasks, such as something as simple as cutting up his food.”
In passing an extended sentence said Ambe, who has 13 convictions for 27 previous offences, posed a high risk of harm to others and said the risk of him committing further offences was considered imminent by probation.
Stephen Cooke, defending, said Ambe had been stabbed when he was 17. After that he said he never felt safe unless he had a knife with him. He said he had been expelled from school in Year 8 and had been in care.