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Attempted Murder Trial of York Man Dropped - Update


11:49am 9th October 2013
(Updated 8:42am 10th October 2013)

A York man who was on trial for attempted murder has had the charge dropped because of a problem with the evidence.

North Yorkshire Police were unable to provide forensic evidence relating to a knife.

Detective Chief Supt Simon Mason, Head of Crime Operations for North Yorkshire Police, said: "I am deeply concerned by the headlines and reporting that has followed the case of attempted murder at Newcastle Crown Court (R v Bennison).

"On face value, those headlines and subsequent reporting represent significant shortcomings in this case which the public will rightly have alarming concerns over.

"However, I am confident that once proceedings, including sentence, are complete the full detail behind such headlines can be made public and put into context, particularly the DNA issue. Much of that context and detail will likely be heard in court prior to sentencing which is scheduled for 31 October 2013.

"In the meantime I would like to reassure the public that this case had a number of complexities which were all taken into account by the prosecution team when accepting a plea of guilty for what was a very serious assault rather than subjecting Amy Evans to the emotional stress and anxiety of giving evidence against her former partner.  

"Had it not been for her courage, and the tenacity of the investigating officers concerned, this successful prosecution could not have been brought and Bennison would be free with the potential to re-offend rather than remain in prison where he currently awaits sentence."

The Crown Prosecution Service told Minster FM:

“We fully expected to have the forensic analysis of the knife with us on Wednesday so we would be able to pursue the charge of attempt murder. Of course, we are disappointed to find that evidence is not available. On this basis we accepted a guilty plea of unlawful wounding.”

It means 29 year old Michael Bennison, who admitted unlawful wounding, will be sentenced on that charge at the end of the month.


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