'I won't lie, this is going to hurt': Shell-shocked Afghanistan war veteran suffered flashbacks as he stabbed girlfriend in stomach
By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 12:49 PM on 26th October 2010
A shellshocked war veteran stabbed his girlfriend in the stomach whilst suffering flashbacks from when he knifed an enemy solider to death in battle.
Former Coldstream Guardsman Wayne Casey, 37, said: 'I'm not going to lie. This is going to hurt' before he plunged the carving knife into Christine Jeffrey's tummy as she cuddled her two year old son Levi in his bedroom.
The ex-soldier was said to have post traumatic stress disorder after service in Bosnia and Afghanistan and on at least one occasion he had to kill a man with a bayonet.
Under pressure: Ex-soldier Wayne Casey was sentenced to three years and four months in jail today at Burnley Crown Court for stabbing his girlfriend whilst suffering a flashback brought on by post traumatic stress disorder
He had been suffering constant flashbacks and nightmares from the harrowing episode, and was depressed and drinking too much.
Burnley Crown Court was told Casey had deliberately selected the sharpest knife in the house – the one he used to cut beef with – for the 'mechanical' attack.
He later told police he did not wish to kill her as if he had he would have stabbed her once through the neck. Miss Jefffrey, 23, pulled the knife out herself and threw the weapon into her son's wardrobe, before running out into the street screaming for help.
The victim ended up with a hole in her colon, a torn bowel, had to have an operation and was in hospital five days.
Today, Casey of Nelson, Lancs, was starting three years and four months in jail after he admitted wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
Burnley Crown Court heard Casey had left the forces in 1998 but then joined up again in 2005. Despite being twice been diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder by doctors after he ended up in hospital for months after causing damage in a sergeants' mess.
But the army did not recognise his condition and 'cast him aside.' Mr Stephen Parker, prosecuting, said Casey and Miss Jeffrey had been in a relationship for 12 months.
But since she had been with him, he had always suffered from bad dreams which had been getting worse.
He would snap at her for no reason, began to drink more heavily and his flashbacks were happening increasingly often.
On May 28 this year, Miss Jeffrey, Casey and her son had been out shopping and said he 'was in a mood'. He started playing poker on his laptop and she went out to get some space after putting her son to bed. She returned about 11pm.
Mr Parker said: 'The defendant then went crazy and started smashing the house up and throwing things around.
'The victim had never seen him like that before. She tried to get upstairs to her son, but he grabbed her, pushed her on the sofa and knocked it over with her on it.
'She banged her head. Miss Jeffrey ran upstairs to her child and cuddled him to calm him down. The defendant came upstairs with the phone on loud speaker to police.
'He was telling them : "I have just smashed my house up and assaulted my Mrs and child. Can you come to my house please?" He then went back downstairs, she stayed her child's room and he then came back up and stabbed her.'
She rang 999 and Casey, who was back downstairs, did nothing to help her. Police were on their way and when an officer saw Casey coming from the end of the street, he told her : 'You better get an ambulance quick. I have just stabbed my Mrs and my kid is in there.' He then ran away and she and two passers-by detained him.
The prosecutor said Casey continued to ask for an ambulance, saying the victim was bleeding. The defendant was arrested and taken to the police station and on the way he said : 'I have stabbed her with a six to eight inch knife and my kids are upstairs.'
Police found the victim in the property and she was taken to hospital, suffering a wound in her right lower abdomen. The defendant was questioned and told officers he had depression and PTSD and was self medicating with drink.
Casey said he had stabbed Miss Jeffrey in the right side whilst she was lying on the floor. He had then put his coat on and left the house.
He claimed doctors in this country just gave him anti-depressants. He said he had spent three and a half months in a mental health hospital in 2008 and after leaving worked in Blackpool and met the victim.
Casey was later asked by police what his intention had been and he replied: 'I just had it in my head it needed to be done. In the army, when you were told something needed to be done, it got done.' Mr Parker said: 'He regretted doing it now, but at the time he didn't. He had had no intention of harming the little boy.
'The defendant told police he had known exactly what he was doing and Ms Jeffrey had been not been a threat to him.
'He said he selected the sharpest knife in the house and stabbed the victim with all the force he had. He told police he wanted to cause her as much pain as possible but didn't want to kill her.'
In his police interview Casey continued : 'If I wanted to kill her I could have just stabbed her once through the neck and that would have done it.'
In mitigation James Heyworth, for Casey, said his client was still unable to offer an explanation as to why he behaved in the way he did.
Casey had joined the Coldstream Guards as a boy soldier. He returned from Afghanistan in 2006, was returned in 2007 and then had to be brought back because of a flare up of his PTSD symptoms.
The army discharged him administratively as they insisted he did not have the disorder. Mr Heyworth added: 'To some extent, he had been cast aside. If he had lost a limb in Afghanistan he would have got help.'
Mr Heyworth said Casey was now getting help off the psychiatric nurse in Preston Prison. He had contacted the charity Combat Stress and a representative was going to visit him to see what assistance they could offer.
The barrister added it was a sad day when someone with a background like the defendant ended up in court. He continued : 'He is entitled, in my submission, to some credit and some gratitude from this court with regard to his lengthy and significant military experience.'
Sentencing Judge Beverley Lunt said there was no question that Casey suffered from PTSD as a result of serving his country and he had been diagnosed with the condition in the 1990s and 2006/2007.
She added: 'I am satisfied you are not a dangerous offender and a psychiatrist thought the same. Fortunately for you, the injuries were not life threatening, but they were obviously unpleasant and surgery was required.'