Woman scarred for life after knife attack in front of young son

A woman has been scarred for life after a knife attack in front of her young son in Sheffield.

Tuesday, 2nd April 2019, 7:05 am
Updated Wednesday, 3rd April 2019, 4:25 pm

Leaharni Docking, aged 24, was slashed across her face in an attack outside her home in Bazley Road, Arbourthorne, while her terrified four-year-old son looked on.

Her attacker, Bethany Bartholomew, 22, of Upperthorpe, has been jailed for three years after pleading guilty to wounding and possessing an offensive weapon in a public place following the incident last July.

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Leaharni Docking was attacked in Arbourthorne last year

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The mum-of-one claims violence flared when she was accused by Batholomew of having her ex-partner’s new girlfriend at her home.

Leaharni, who has moved away from Arbourthorne since the attack, labelled Bartholomew a ‘disgrace’ for attacking her in front of her son.

Leaharni Docking, 24, was injured in a knife attack in front of her young son

“It was only about 7am and I heard a commotion outside involving people who had been at a party over the road. They were banging on my door and trying to get inside,” she said.

“My son’s dad was chased down the street by somebody with a knife when he went outside to see what was happening.

“I was punched and stabbed in my face near my eye. I will be permanently scarred.

"What made things worse was that my four-year-old son saw all this happening – he watched me getting stabbed and I am worried how it will affect him long term.

Leaharni Docking's attacker pleaded guilty to wounding and possessing an offensive weapon in a public place

“He talks about the ‘nasty lady’ and he sees my scar every day. She is a disgrace for what she did in front of him.”

Leaharni said she is disappointed that the attempted murder charge Bartholomew originally faced was dropped.

“She said she did not intend to do it but if you pull a knife out on someone then your intention is to use it,” she said.

“I am disappointed in the justice system – she will be getting help she needs in prison, but what help are me and my son getting? Nothing.

Bethany Bartholomew has been jailed for three years for stabbing another woman

“We have had to move away from where it happened and have just been left to carry on without any support or help at all. It’s disgusting.”

Detective Sergeant Andy Shields, said: “This was an incredibly violent attack on a young woman, which left her with serious facial injuries requiring extensive hospital treatment. “The events of that morning will no doubt stay with her forever, and also the people who saw what happened.

“I hope that knowing Bartholomew is now serving time behind bars goes some way in helping her to continue moving forward. “Anyone found to be carrying a knife or involved in violent crime, can expect to be identified, arrested and brought before the courts. Knife crime ruins lives and we are committed to tackling it across South Yorkshire.”