March 8, 2021 5.03 pm This story is over 15 months old

Man who tried to kill old school friend deemed mentally unfit

He was put in a mental health hospital

A Lincolnshire man attempted to murder an old school friend after speaking of the “afterlife”, a jury was told.

Christopher Thompson, 22, attacked Petras Cirtautas with a kitchen kife after arranging to meet him at Heckington railway station in August last year.

Lincoln Crown Court heard Thompson produced the kitchen knife without warning after the two men walked into Heckington together.

The two men had previously attended St George’s School in Sleaford and were old friends, the court was told.

In a witness statement Mr Cirtautas, also known as Peter, described how Thompson had been talking about the afterlife prior to the attack and then handed him a penknife.

Luke Blackburn, prosecuting, said the incident occurred after Mr Cirtautas travelled by train from Sleaford to Heckington to meet Thompson.

“The defendant tried to murder a friend of his in August last year. He tried to stab him to death,” Mr Blackburn told a jury.

Mr Blackburn said Thompson had spoken about the afterlife shortly before the attack.

“At that point, completely unprovoked, Mr Thompson attacked Mr Cirtautas with a kitchen knife, stabbing him in the chest.”

The blow punctured Mr Cirtautas’s lung and he fell to the floor.

The jury heard Mr Cirtautas tried to wrestle the knife from Thompson but suffered further injuries to his forearm, neck, chin and the back of his head.

The attack only ended when Mr Cirtautas persuaded Thompson that he would not use the knife himself if he handed it over.

After the attack Thompson, of Heckington Road, Great Hale, told Mr Cirtautas “I’m sorry that I wasn’t able to kill you.”

Thompson also remarked that Mr Cirtautas would have a better afterlife if he stabbed him before 8pm.

The court heard Mr Cirtautas was taken to the home of two off duty police officers by witnesses who came across the incident.

Mark Watson, defending Thompson, said the events outlined by the prosecution were not disputed by his defence team.

Thompson was charged with attempted murder and possessing a bladed article in a public place following the attack on 10 August last year.

However doctors later decided Thompson was unfit to enter pleas to the offences because of his mental health issues.

A jury was still required to decide if Thompson carried out the attempted murder and was in possession of a bladed article in a public place.

The jury took just 15 minutes to decide that Thompson did commit both offences.

Thompson has been remanded in custody and did not attend the hearing.

Judge Simon Hirst adjourned the case for six weeks for further medical reports on Thompson and for him to be transferred to a mental health hospital.

The judge told the jury: “On any view this was a serious incident that could have ended in a fatality.”