Mum-to-be who stabbed man lights cig as she’s spared jail because baby due

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A mum-to-be who stabbed a man in the back has been spared jail because she is due to give birth on Sunday.

Heavily-pregnant Angelika Struckaja, 24, was pictured lighting up a cigarette outside Liverpool Crown Court as she walked free.

As she left the dock, she embraced a male supporter, carrying two holdall bags.

The court heard she flew into a drunken rage when Mark Smith made an unwanted sexual comment towards her.

She replied "eat my p***y" before going into her flat in Southport, Merseyside, and arming herself with a kitchen knife.

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Struckaja then ran out and knifed Smith in the back, before paramedics airlifted him to hospital for emergency treatment.

But she walked free from court on Thursday because she is due to give birth this week.

Struckaja – assisted by a Lithuanian interpreter – was allowed to sit or stand in the dock because of her impending baby.

The court heard witness Christopher Dunne lived in the same block of flats as the defendant on Scarisbrick Street.

Frances Willmott, prosecuting, said Dunne had been talking to the victim outside on August 22 last year when Struckaja walked past.

She then headed down the street before returning shortly afterwards with a bag thought to contain cans of beer.

Willmott said: "As she was going into the block of flats, Mark Smith made a comment of a sexual nature to the defendant and she responded to that."

The court heard this exchange was based on the evidence of Mr Dunne.

Willmott said: "What was said to the defendant isn't recorded in his statement. The defendant's response was 'eat my p***y'."

Reported in the Liverpool Echo, she said Struckaja "came running out of her flat" five minutes later brandishing a "large kitchen knife".

Willmott said: "She ran at Mark Smith, who was sat on a wall. She stabbed towards his stomach, but he managed to dodge the knife and got off the wall.

"The defendant continued to swing the knife at Mark Smith, while he shouted at her, asking her what she was doing.

"She then stabbed him in the side and continued trying to attack him, causing him to throw a bag at her.

"He was shouting that he had been stabbed, then ran down the street."

Dunne was able to call 999 and police arrived and took a photo of a "small but deep puncture wound" on his back as well as a scratch on his stomach.

The court heard Smith refused to help the police in any way, meaning there was no medical evidence.

Recorder Eric Lamb, sentencing, concluded Struckaja had committed a "repeated assault" but accepted she was of "positive good character" and hadn't offended before or since.

He said there was "a realistic prospect of rehabilitation" and the expectant mum had "strong personal mitigation", including: "The fact that you will need to care for your child when that child is born soon."

Lamb went on: "Immediate custody will result in significant harmful impact upon others. While there are arrangements in place for defendants to give birth in custody, nonetheless it would not assist your care of your child if you were in custody."

He handed her two years in prison, suspended for two years, with a 20-day Rehabilitation Activity Requirement, including attendance with the Women's Turnaround Project.

  • Knife Crime
  • Pregnancy
  • Courts

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