Woman, 22, launches wild steak knife rampage after man ‘stares at her’

A young woman went on a wild steak knife rampage outside a corner shop after she claims a man ‘stared at her’, a court has heard.

Carla Couperthwaite, 22, chased the man into the convenience store in Bolton, Greater Manchester, while wielding the knife "like a dagger".

Stopped from getting in, she then repeatedly stabbed at the door with the serrated blade in a "frightening and ferocious" attack.

She would later claim she "did not like the way" the man had been looking at her.

Couperthwaite, who had been drinking and was "frothing at the mouth", spent five minutes trying to get into the Balaton store on Halliwell Road.

During the incident, another woman, who was trying to calm her down, managed to get the knife off her, the Manchester Evening News reports.

But Couperthwaite then attacked a second man – who was a stranger – after he "visibly reacted with alarm" when he came across the scene.

She bundled him to the ground and apparently kicked and stamped at him, Bolton Crown Court heard.

It is thought the first man was not injured, while a judge said "we do not know what damage" the defendant did to the second man.

Couperthwaite, who has previous convictions for violence, was arrested at her mum’s home after police were alerted to the incident last month.

She later admitted that she had been drinking heavily, and claimed that the way the first man had been looking at her was ‘troubling’.

She is thought to have got the knife from her home near the scene.

Couperthwaite has now been locked up for 16 months after pleading guilty to two offences – affray, and possessing a bladed article in a public place.

Judge Timothy Stead had adjourned her sentencing so he could examine the blade, saying knife crime in the UK was a ‘concerning national issue’.

The judge said: ”The current climate amounts to it being mentioned every time you turn on the television news.

"The knife which features in this case was brought to court and I actually have it in my chambers. It appears to be a steak knife with a serrated blade.

“It appears to be blunted at the end, which is consistent with the defendant’s actions where she stabbed the door with force."

Addressing Couperthwaite, he said: ”You are 22 years old and you have a lengthy record of offences for somebody your age.

"Heavy drinking and intoxication seem to be a big part of your life and it featured in this offence.

“You pleaded guilty to two offences, one of affray and one of possessing a bladed article in a public place."

He added: "The CCTV recording of the incident began with a young male running across the road and running into a shop and he must have locked or barricaded the door from the inside as you were unable to gain entry.

“You were chasing after him with one arm raised, holding a knife in your hand like a dagger. It is a steak knife which has been blunted, which is consistent with you stabbing the door with force.

“You were effectively launching a frightening and ferocious attack on the door to get to this man. Fortunately there was another woman trying to calm you down and she managed to get the knife off you.

“You were described as frothing at the mouth and completely out of control."

The judge said the attack on the door was "not the end of this offence."

“A male stranger was walking along and he visibly reacted with alarm when he saw the knife in the hand of the woman, so you attacked him," he told Couperthwaite.

"You got him to the ground and you can be seen kicking him and stamping at him. We do not know what damage you did to this man because he remains a stranger. There is no other option I have but to give you a custodial sentence.”

The attack occurred at 6.45pm on February 4, the court heard.

Couperthwaite was seen trying to batter down the door of the shop to get to the first man, before turning her attention to the passerby.

She did not use the knife on him.

In mitigation, her lawyer Nicholas Ross said: “The knife can be described as an eating knife rather than a cutting, kitchen knife.

"There are no excuses but she now wants to take opportunities.

”The male in question, she felt, had been looking at her on a number of occasions in a manner she felt was troubling.

"She had seen the man staring at her several times previously. What she did then however has absolutely no excuse. She is ashamed by her conduct."

He added: ”She had a number of challenges in her life and had begun drinking at the age of 13 as a way of dealing with lack of self-esteem.”

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