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Woman stabbed husband in heart during argument while cooking, court told

Teresa Hanson is on trial at Hull Crown Court, accused of murdering Paul Hanson three days after Christmas last year.

A woman stabbed her husband in the heart with a kitchen knife during an argument while she was preparing their tea, prosecutors have told a jury.

Teresa Hanson is on trial at Hull Crown Court, accused of murdering Paul Hanson three days after Christmas last year.

Jurors were told the 54-year-old stabbed her husband in the kitchen of their home in the East Yorkshire village of West Cowick.

She told 999 call operators she had stabbed him after a row, but later told police Mr Hanson had effectively walked onto the knife when he unexpectedly turned towards her while she was cooking.

Hanson called emergency services at 7.05pm on December 28 and told the ambulance operator she and her husband had had an argument and that she had “accidentally” stabbed him, prosecutor Alistair MacDonald KC told the court.

After being arrested on suspicion of murder, Hanson said her husband had been “verbally and mentally abusive” towards her during the marriage, and that this had got worse since he suffered a brain injury about 10 years ago.

Crown court stock
Teresa Hanson is on trial at Hull Crown Court, accused of murdering Paul Hanson (Dave Higgens/PA)

In a pre-prepared statement, she said Mr Hanson had approached her “in a bad mood” and was shouting at her while she was preparing their evening meal.

Hanson said that as Mr Hanson came straight at her, she turned towards him with the knife still in her hand, jurors heard.

She claimed she did not realise it had penetrated his body until she heard the dog barking and saw a trail of blood on the floor leading towards her husband, who had collapsed.

Jurors heard that during her first call to emergency services, Hanson was asked who had stabbed her husband, and she replied: “Just out of anger.”

She went on to say: “We was having a row. I didn’t mean to.”

Mr MacDonald said that in a second 999 call, Hanson said: “We had an argument and I had … I was cutting, cooking tea and he told me to f*** off and I’m a bitch so I just like, I don’t know what I did.”

The court heard ambulance staff were unable to save Mr Hanson’s life and he was “effectively dead on arrival” at Hull Royal Infirmary that evening.

Jurors were told the knife had gone into Mr Hanson’s chest at “about the level of the nipples” and cut through the chest cavity into his heart.

When police arrived at her house, Hanson told them “I didn’t mean to do it, it was just an argument. I was making f****** tea”, Mr Macdonald said.

In her pre-prepared statement to officers the next day, Hanson said her husband was “verbally and mentally abusive” and that this was “worse when he drinks”.

She said she had been in the kitchen preparing a meal when Mr Hanson came into the kitchen in “a bad mood”.

“This normally happens when I mention his drinking,” she said.

“He came alongside me shouting. I turned towards him with the knife in my hand, not in a threatening way.

“I had no idea when he walked towards me he came straight at me and the knife went straight into him.”

Mr MacDonald said Hanson refused to answer any further questions from police, but that pathologist Dr Michael Parsons was asked to look at her account of what had happened.

The prosecutor said: “It is, of course, theoretically possible for someone to fall or run onto a knife blade and thereby cause a serious injury but such injuries are extremely rare.

“Second, the height at which this happened is difficult to understand on the defendant’s case.

“She is 155cm tall whereas the stab wound entered Mr Hanson’s body 129cm above (…) the ground.

“The knife would have had to have been held very firmly by Mrs Hanson in order for it to have penetrated his chest as it did and without just slipping off his chest and or falling out of her hand before it went into his chest tissues.

“Dr Parsons has considered scientific research on this issue and has concluded that it is, in his opinion, highly unlikely that Mr Hanson simply walked on to a weakly grasped knife blade so as to cause a fatal stab wound of the type found in this case.”

Mr MacDonald added: “Although Mrs Hanson told the police that her husband could be bad-tempered when he had had a drink, and that he had been drinking that night, she was quite clear that she did not stab her husband because he had been abusive to her.

“Her case was quite clearly put on the basis that this was a terrible accident.”

Hanson denies murder and the trial continues.

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