Lavinia Woodward, an “extraordinary” Oxford University student who is studying to become a heart surgeon, stabbed her Tinder date with a bread-knife yet could still be spared jail time after a judge said a custodial sentence would damage her future career.
Woodward, 24, swiped at her boyfriend with the blade before stabbing him in the leg. She then threw a laptop, a glass and a jam jar at him during a argument at Christ Church college, Oxford. Drugs and alcohol were found in her system at the time.
Woodward, who currently lives in Milan, Italy, admitted unlawful wounding at an earlier hearing. Judge Ian Pringle said the offense normally results in a prison sentence, but he decided to delay sentencing and assigned her a restraining order to stay drug-free and not to commit similar acts.
Pringle told the court: “It seems to me that if this was a one-off, a complete one-off, to prevent this extraordinary able young lady from not following her long-held desire to enter the profession she wishes to, would be a sentence which would be too severe.
“What you did will never, I know, leave you but it was pretty awful, and normally it would attract a custodial sentence, whether it is immediate or suspended.”
Prosecutor Cathy Olliver said that Woodward and her former boyfriend met online and at the time of the attack, which took place on September 30, her behavior had “deteriorated.”
The victim called Woodward’s mother on Skype, which prompted Woodward her punch him in the face before assaulting him with the knife. In defense, James Sturman QC said his client’s dreams of becoming a surgeon were “almost impossible” as her conviction would have to be disclosed.
Struman argued that Woodward had had a “very troubled life,” struggled with drug addiction and even been abused by a former ex.
Lavinia Woodward is a 24-year-old student at Oxford University who is studying to become a heart surgeon. On September 30, she got into a fight with her boyfriend and punched him in the face, stabbed him in the leg and threw objects at him. Despite this, she could be spared jail time as a judge said it would damage her potential career.
Woodward will be sentenced on September 25.