Knifeman jailed after claim of self-defence is rejected

A KNIFE attacker who barged into a man’s house and stabbed him has been jailed for two and a half years.

Matthew Johnstone, 29, had denied assault to severe injury and lodged a special defence of self defence. However, a jury found him guilty by a majority of a lesser charge of assault to injury.

Livingston Sheriff Court was told that Johnstone, of Armadale, West Lothian, had previous convictions for similar crimes.

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The jury heard that the attack took place at a house in Burns Avenue, Armadale, on July 6, 2011. Johnstone and another man burst into the house and attacked Darren Snedden with the blade.

Mr Snedden suffered a 1.5cm wound to the left corner of his mouth which required three stitches.

He was also treated for a 3cm cut on the back of his left hand which was closed with butterfly stitches.

Sheriff Martin Edington yesterday sentenced Johnstone to 30 months in prison.