A paranoid schizophrenic who armed himself with a sword and seriously injured a woman in a Birmingham street as well as slashing a police officer across the face has been sent to a secure psychiatric hospital for an indefinite period.
Before the attacks, Paul Parchment's family had made desperate attempts to have him medically assessed and placed in a safe environment, the city's crown court heard yesterday.
Passing sentence Judge Frank Chapman said the 61-year-old woman had been on her way to work and had been standing at a zebra crossing when Parchment stabbed her.
"The wound you inflicted upon her might well have killed her and that was done without any conversation, without any confrontation and can only be explained because you were so ill," he said. "It is plain from what your family say that for more than three years before this incident occurred they had tried desperately to get help for you. It is plain they sought help from every source available but did not get enough help soon enough to prevent this from happening."
Parchment, 25, of Princess Road, Balsall Heath, pleaded guilty to charges of attempted murder, assault and wounding with intent.
Michael Duck, prosecuting, said on August 30 last year Mrs Yuk Yau had left her home to work at a hospital, getting as far as a pedestrian crossing on the Pershore Road, Balsall Heath, when she was approached by Parchment from behind.
"She was conscious of him being behind her and was seen by people to take hold of her left arm and without saying a word to place a very sharp weapon into her lower back."
After being stabbed, Mrs Yau managed to cross the road but then collapsed.
Mr Duck said the wound had passed through her liver and that she later had to undergo an emergency operation.
He said the seriousness of her condition was indicated by the massive amount of blood that was used during the course of transfusions and that she spent two weeks in hospital.
Mr Duck said Parchment had then gone into a general stores where he took alcohol, injuring the store owner with the knife after he had tried to challenge him.
Parchment was then pursued by a number of police officers across waste ground who saw that as well as a knife he was armed with a sword. Unsuccessful attempts were made to subdue Parchment, who was wearing ski goggles, with CS gas.
Mr Duck said an officer in a car then drove in front of the defendant causing him to stumble while PC Benjamin Burfitt, who was behind him, also fell to the ground. He said while they were both on the ground Parchment made a back handed swipe with the sword, catching the officer on the right cheek and across the nose before the defendant was finally detained and the sword wrestled from him.
Sally Hancox, defending, said Parchment's mental health had started to deteriorate in 2003 and that when he had gone out on that day he was very ill.
She said his family had tried to get help for him and that Parchment had an appointment to be assessed for his mental health the day after the attacks.