Sunderland knifeman jailed after England World Cup semi-final affray

A man has been jailed after aggressively brandishing a knife in the direction of another male in the street.

Friday, 21st September 2018, 5:22 pm
Updated Friday, 21st September 2018, 5:27 pm
Lee Sewell.
Lee Sewell.

Newcastle Crown Court heard how police were called to Roker Avenue, in Sunderland, on July 11 following concerns about a man with a knife.

Michael Bunch, prosecuting, said footage, recorded by a resident in the area, showed Lee Sewell, 37, carrying an object under his arm.

Mr Bunch said: "The defendant make aggressive moves towards the other man effectively brandishing the knife in his direction."

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Mr Bunch told the court how the other man had blood under his left armpit although the footage did not show how the injury was caused.

Sewell was arrested and told police that he had been watching an England football game that evening and drinking vodka.

He said he had been confronted by the other man and had for a kitchen knife to scare him out of the address.

Mr Bunch said Sewell denied causing the injury to the other man and that the knife was never recovered.

Sewell, of Roker Avenue, Sunderland, appeared at court via video link to Durham prison.

He had previously admitted affray, possession of a bladed article and failing to attend court.

The offences took place on the night England were beaten by Croatia in the World Cup semi-final in Russia.

Jonathan Pigford, defending, told the court how Sewell's father was murdered in 2004 in a "horrific set of circumstances".

He said the murder had had a "traumatic" effect on Sewell.

Mr Pigford said: "There are issues in relation to alcohol misuse."

"Mr Pigford said that Sewell had attempted to commit suicide on two occasions.

"He also told the court how Sewell hadn’t been in prison since 2006, when he served time in custody for driving matters."

Mr Recorder Nicholas Lumley told Sewell: "What you did was frightening.

"It's a matter of good fortune no other member of the public was hurt by your reckless behaviour that evening.

"This was serious behaviour.

"I have read and heard of your significant difficulties, I have read a great deal about you.

"I accept you have been doing a great deal to make things better for you."

Recorder Lumley sentenced Sewell to eight months in prison.