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Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Man who stabbed neighbour had told police: ‘I will murder him’, jury told | UK news

A man stabbed a neighbour in a Gloucestershire village 27 times the day after telling a police officer: “I will murder him”, a jury has been told.

Can Arslan, 52, killed father-of-three Matthew Boorman and seriously wounded his wife, Sarah Boorman, as she tried to fight him off, before forcing his way into the home of another neighbour, Peter Marsden, and knifing him eight times.

Bristol crown court heard there had been a “long-running” dispute between Arslan and his neighbours, with small rows over parking and a scratch to a car, escalating to the point where Arslan faced eviction and repeatedly threatened to attack or kill those living near him.

Matthew Boorman.
Matthew Boorman. Photograph: Family handout/PA

Five months before the attacks, which took place in October last year, Sarah Boorman had made a statement to police setting out the threats they had received from the defendant. She said they were worried about being murdered, or that someone was going to be seriously hurt very soon.

Arslan made counter-allegations, accusing the Boormans of racially abusing him. The day before the attack, a police officer had telephoned Arslan about the complaint he had made and the defendant had told him he would murder Boorman.

Arslan has admitted causing grievous bodily harm to Sarah Boorman, who suffered a deep knife wound to her thigh, and the attempted murder of Marsden and affray, but denies murder.

On the first day of his trial, Kate Brunner QC, prosecuting, told the jury there was no dispute that Arslan had killed Boorman, 43, telling them what they must decide was whether it was murder or manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

She said there was long-running dispute between Arslan and his neighbours in the village of Walton Cardiff, near Tewkesbury, resulting in them trying to get him evicted.

Boorman had just parked outside his house at about 5.20pm on 5 October after returning from work, and was still on a conference call when Arslan stabbed him.

Colleagues on the conference call heard Boorman shout: “What the fuck are you doing?” and Arslan replying: “Fucking want it?” in a “goading” tone. Brunner said: “The defendant appeared calm, smiling as if he was amused by what he was doing.”

After leaving Boorman dead or dying on his front lawn, Arslan forced his way into Marsden’s kitchen, where he was sitting with his wife. Marsden managed to grapple Arslan out of the property and lock the door, although he sustained eight serious knife wounds.

A psychiatric assessment found that Arslan was alert and had no psychotic symptoms, the prosecution claims, but the court was told the defence would argue he was in the grip of a psychiatric disorder.

The trial continues.

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