Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

I STABBED 'OUR LASS' Court Told of 999 Call

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

I STABBED 'OUR LASS' Court Told of 999 Call

Article excerpt

A MAN brutally murdered his partner of 20 years after a drunken argument, a court heard.

Mark Dunning, 48, was three times over the drink-drive limit when he fatally stabbed 45-year-old Catherine Kirton, it is alleged.

But when police arrived, Dunning, who denies murder, tried to cuddle her and said: "She's all right, isn't she?", a jury at Newcastle Crown Court was told yesterday.

The attack took place at their home in Chestnut Square, Stockton, in the early hours of July 24 last year. Ms Kirton died hours later.

Christopher Attwooll, prosecuting, told the jury: "The facts of this case are very straight forward.

"There will be little dispute between prosecution and defence as to what happened or what the defendant did.

"The main task for you will be to decide what the defendant's intention was when he stabbed Catherine Kirton.

The defendant and the deceased were partners. They had been together for 20 years.

"At 12.34am, the North East Ambulance Service received a 999 call from the defendant and in that call he said he had stabbed 'our lass'.

"The defendant reported the deceased was bleeding profusely and the ambulance was dispatched immediately.

Because of the nature of the call, police were notified and attended the address themselves.

"The defendant let them in the house and they found the deceased laying on the sofa. There was a large amount of blood present."

Ms Kirton was found to have suffered wounds to her abdomen, her thighs, her right calf and her left wrist.

Mr Attwooll continued: "A paramedic entered the house and found the deceased to be in an unresponsive state although still breathing. She was in a very serious condition and taken to North Tees University Hospital.

"She arrived at 1.31am. The wound to her left thigh had severed an artery, the stomach wound had cut through veins and another artery. …

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