Horrifying X-ray shows 14cm knife blade lodged in man’s throat – but he survived

Thomas Brazell, 28, lunged at the victim with a kitchen knife and stabbed him at the bottom of his neck before the handle of the knife snapped off and the blade remained stuck in his body

The incredible x-ray shows the blade lodged in the victim’s throat after the handle snapped off

A man was left with a five-and-a-half inch blade lodged inside the base of his neck after the handle snapped during a vicious attack.

Thomas Brazell, 28, lunged at the victim with a kitchen knife and stabbed him at the bottom of his neck.

Newcastle Crown Court heard how the handle of the knife snapped off and the blade remained stuck in his body.

Robin Turton, prosecuting, told the court how the victim had to undergo emergency surgery to remove the blade following the incident in Shildon, County Durham.

He said he has been left unable to use his right arm and it is anticipated that he may have a long term disability.

Mr Turton said the landscape gardener, who has also been left with a scar, described being in “unbearable pain”. He said: “He can no longer open the car door, he can not turn on the ignition. He can not work and, as a result, his family has no money.”

The court heard how Brazell and the man had squared up to each other while at a pub in the town on October 31 last year and the victim had been ejected from the premises.

Thomas Brazell, 28, lunged at the victim with a kitchen knife and stabbed him at the bottom of his neck



Brazell received threatening messages and three males, including the victim, turned up outside the house which he shared with his father on Jubilee Road, Chronicle Live reports.

The defendant was attacked in the street by the group of three. Two of them, including the victim, were armed with either wooden sticks or metal poles. The court heard how the male appeared to swing at Brazell four times and the defendant attacked him with a kitchen knife.

The victim was taken to Darlington Memorial Hospital, before being transferred to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough where he had the blade removed. The court heard how it had cut two blood vessels in the man’s body which cannot be repaired.

Brazell, of Jubilee Road, Shildon, pleaded guilty to wounding with intent. He was initially charged with attempted murder however the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) accepted his plea to the lesser charge. The court heard how the defendant has previous convictions including an offense of assault occasioning current bodily harm against his ex-girlfriend of him.

David Lamb QC, defending, told the court how they were obviously, the defense said, seeking to attack either the defendant, his father, their home or all three options. He said the court should sentence him on the basis that he was acting in self defense and his actions went “too far”.

Newcastle Crown Court heard how the knife handle snapped off, leaving the blade lodged in the victim’s throat


Newcastle Chronicle)

Mr Lamb said: “There was a single wound as apposed to multiple wounds. This was not a sustained or repeated assault on the same victim. He was not part of a group or a gang, indeed the opposite was true.” He said that Brazell was remorseful and he asked the court to accept that remorse.

Mr Lamb added: “Thomas Brazell recognizes that his victim sustained a very serious injury.” He said the defendant wishes that the victim and his family of him are able to find some peace in the future.

Judge Nathan Adams told the court how the knife appeared to have a five-and-a-half inch blade. He said: “It’s a single blow but, it’s right to say, that handle had broken off the knife and it appears to have been stuck in (the victim).

“Over three liters of blood was discovered in the chest cavity which is a substantial quantity. (The victim) cannot grip or lift with his right hand. He can’t work as a landscape gardener at all.”

He told Brazell that the victim’s injuries were life-threatening and that he was, in his own admission, under the influence of alcohol. However the judge accepted that he was remorseful for his actions.

Judge Adams sentenced Brazell to seven years and two months behind bars. He told him that, as the sentence was over seven years, he would have to serve two thirds of the sentence before he would be released.

Following the sentencing hearing, Detective Constable Sunil Weerasinghe, of Durham Constabulary, said: “This man is incredibly lucky to be alive, although he will suffer the consequences of the attack for the rest of his life. As we have seen here, knife crime has such devastating consequences for not just the victim, but everyone involved.

“We will always take robust action against those who choose to carry knives and use them to harm others. Hopefully, this sentence will give Thomas Brazell a chance to reflect on his actions.”

#OpScepter is underway this week aiming to reduce the number of bladed articles that might otherwise be used in crime. Knife bins are in the receptions of Bishop Auckland, Durham City, Darlington, and Peterlee police stations, until tomorrow to allow people to surrender items anonymously.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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