Violent criminal gets 10 years behind bars after brutal Hitchin stabbing

Richard Campbell, 33, has been found guilty of GBH. Picture: Herts police

Richard Campbell, 33, has been found guilty of GBH. Picture: Herts police - Credit: Archant

A violent criminal faces a decade behind bars for stabbing an acquaintance in Hitchin after an argument in a bar – with his victim said to be ‘lucky to have survived’.

Police at the scene of the stabbing at the junction for Fishponds Road and Bunyan Road in Hitchin.

Police at the scene of the stabbing at the junction for Fishponds Road and Bunyan Road in Hitchin. - Credit: Archant

Richard Campbell – from Downderry Road in Bromley – was sentenced to 10 years in prison, with a five-year extended licence, for carrying out a brutal stabbing which happened in Hitchin during October last year.

Friday’s sentencing follows a two-week trial at St Albans Crown Court, with the jury finding the 33-year-old guilty of grievous bodily harm on April 11.

During the early hours of October 22, 2016, after a night out, Campbell brutally attacked his victim with a knife at the junction of Bunyan Road and Fishponds Road.

The ferocity of the attack resulted in the victim sustaining over a dozen individual stab wounds to his chest and abdomen.

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Campbell admitted to going out that night armed with a knife. He attacked his victim in an act of retribution following a small disagreement between the pair at the Venue nightspot in Bancroft during the course of the evening.

The victim, a man in his late 30s, sustained life-changing injuries as a result.

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Following the attack Campbell ran away from the scene, leaving the victim lying in the road and dumping the knife in a bin some distance away.

The knife was recovered the next day by police officers making a meticulous search for evidence in the area of the attack.

Initial enquiries made by detectives from the North Herts Local Crime Unit quickly identified Richard Campbell as a suspect but, despite knowing that police were looking for him, he went to ground and was difficult to locate.

Detective Inspector Lynda Coates, who led the investigation, said: “Richard Campbell is a dangerous offender who subjected his victim to a horrific attack.

“The investigation became a relentless manhunt involving a significant number of police officers working extraordinary hours, and included the assistance of officers from the Serious and Organised Crime Command and the Armed Policing Unit. Campbell was finally arrested in Hitchin on November 2, he was charged on the November 4 and remanded to custody where he has remained since.

“This was an isolated incident involving two men who were known to each other – thankfully it is very rare in North Herts for such vicious crimes to happen in a public street.

“My officers worked extremely hard to identify and arrest Campbell, and to bring this case to a successful resolution as quickly as possible.

“We are delighted with the sentence that Campbell has been given. It reflects the severity of his actions and intentions on that night, and the consequences of carrying out such a brutal attack.

“This conviction demonstrates our determination to relentlessly pursue any person who is involved in violent crime where weapons are used to inflict serious injury against others.”

The five-year extended licence imposed upon Campbell will ensure he returns to prison to serve the full length of his sentence if he is involved in any further criminality after his release.

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