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Judge who spared Oxford student jail in stabbing case to be investigated


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The judge who gave Oxford student Lavinia Woodward a suspended sentence for stabbing her boyfriend is to be investigated by the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office (JCIO).

Ian Pringle QC had stated at an earlier hearing that a prison sentence would damage Woodward´s career.

The 24-year old medical student admits to having thrown a laptop at her then boyfriend and stabbing him in the leg with a breadknife before attempting to stab herself. The attack took place at her student accommodation when she was visited by him in December.

The court was told that Woodward had become addicted to Class A drugs and alcohol, as well as developing an eating disorder, whilst in an abusive relationship with a previous boyfriend. She was later admitted to a clinic for treatment and Pringle described her as having shown a "strong and unwavering determination" to overcome the afflictions. He also said he found her to be “genuinely remorseful”.

The decision to deliver a suspended sentence has been incredibly controversial, with campaigners against male domestic abuse fearing that the judgement would put other men off coming forward.

Chairman of the ManKind Initiative Mark Brooks highlighted that had Woodward been a man she would undoubtedly been expected to go to serve a custodial sentence. 

Images courtesy of Lobster1 and Diliff.

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