Ex-policeman Andrew Stevenson stabbed his former wife Lyneth 22 times
A former policeman tried to kill his ex-wife in a frenzied knife attack because he didn’t want to pay her a £152,000 divorce settlement, a court has heard.
Andrew Stevenson, 58, armed himself with two kitchen knives and lay in wait for his victim outside her home in Neath, Wales before launching the attack on the morning of September 5.
His ex-wife, Lyneth Stevenson, suffered 22 stab and slash wounds and asked paramedics on the way to hospital if she was going to die.
In June this year, Mr Stevenson was ordered to pay his ex-wife £152,500 in a divorce settlement.
Swansea Crown Court heard that Andrew Stevenson had an ‘obsession’ with the money.
The couple married in 1989 and had two sons, but by 2008 the marriage had broken down.
John Hipkin, prosecuting, said that Mrs Stevenson then began a new relationship although divorce proceedings weren’t started until 2016.
The court heard that Mr Stevenson wrote, but did not send, a text message on August 20 that was intended for one of his sons.
It said: ‘Forgive me for what I am going to do. She is not robbing £150,000 from us. Look after yourself and the three others. You take care, I will always love you.’
In the early hours of September 5, Mr Stevenson armed himself with two knives.
He travelled from his home in Morriston, Swansea, to his ex’s home in Aberdulais, Neath, where he ‘lay in wait’ for her outside the communal front door.
Shortly after 6.30am, as Mrs Stevenson’s new partner William Parsons was leaving the property for work, Mr Stevenson pounced, forcing his way into the communal hallway and attacking his ex-wife with the knives while shouting ‘she has taken everything from me, I want her to die’.
Swansea Crown heard how Mr Stevenson pounced on his ex-wife with two kitchen knives and shouted ‘she has taken everything from me, I want her to die’.
Mr Parsons wrestled with the frenzied attacker and managed to get one of the knives off him.
He then used the weapon to stab Mr Stevenson in the hand in a desperate attempt to make him let go of the other knife.
The court heard there was a ‘pool of blood’ on the floor of the hallway and at one stage Mrs Stevenson tried to drag herself back into the flat but her frenzied ex held on to her by the ankles.
Eventually, she got free and crawled into her flat and made a 999 call, while Mr Parsons tried to stem the bleeding from her wounds.
When paramedics arrived they found Mrs Stevenson with 22 laceration and puncture wounds to her chest, back, arms and legs.
On they way to Morriston Hospital, Mrs Stevenson asked the ambulance crew if she was going to die.
She had to spend three days in hospital but survived the ordeal.
Victim Lyneth Stevenson was rushed to Morriston Hospital in Swansea where she was treated for 22 stab and slash wounds
In a victim impact statement she said the attack had left her anxious and fearful and she just wanted to return to a normal life.
She added: ‘My husband took away my normal life when he decided my life was less important than his money, less important than for his children, and hopefully their children, to see their mother.’
Former policeman Mr Stevenson, of Llwyn-yr-Hebog, Cwmrhydyceirw, Morriston, had previously pleaded guilty to attempted murder when he appeared in the dock for sentencing.
Owen Williams, defending, said his client had worked as a policeman and a paramedic before taking early retirement, and was a man of clean character previously.
He also said a psychiatric report had concluded he had become ‘preoccupied to the point of obsession’ with what he felt was the injustice of the divorce settlement.
The barrister said: ‘It was clearly disturbed thinking, and those disturbed thoughts took over. This was not a man who was thinking properly at the time of the offence.’
Judge Keith Thomas said the prospect of having to give his ex-wife £152,000 was the reason behind Mr Stevenson launching the attack.
He said the defendant had clearly thought about the killing, had armed himself with two knives and, knowing the morning routine of the couple, had travelled to Neath and launched his ‘murderous attack’.
He imposed a 21-year extended sentence for public protection, comprising 16 years in custody and a five-year extended licence.
He also made Mr Stevenson subject to an indefinite restraining order banning him from contacting the couple.
The judge said he was satisfied Mr Stevenson had intended to murder his ex-wife, and it was only the intervention of her new partner that had stopped him from carrying out his plan.
He told the defendant: ‘This was a callous, cold-blooded, and premeditated attempt to rid yourself of a financial burden.’
On the way to Morriston Hospital, Mrs Stevenson asked paramedics if she was going to die but survived the frenzied attack after spending three days in hospital
Speaking after the sentence, South Wales Police detective chief inspector David Peart described the attack as ‘appalling’, and said he wanted to thank the members of the community who had helped his officers with the investigation.
He said: ‘As always, our thoughts are with Lyneth Stevenson and her the family and friends who I hope have been given some comfort by today’s sentencing of Andrew Stevenson.
‘This really was an appalling incident and the circumstances have brought shock to the local community. This was an isolated offence and I would like to thank those members of the community that assisted us through the investigation.’
He added: ‘Knife crime is unacceptable. This case shows the devastating effect the criminal use of a knife can have on an individual and their family. Carrying a knife is a crime, even without using it, and will result in prosecution.’