Court May Grant 'Extraordinary' Student Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Card

She may not be punished for stabbing her boyfriend
By Gina Carey,  Newser Staff
Posted May 18, 2017 11:15 AM CDT
Aspiring Surgeon May Avoid Jail Time for Stabbing Boyfriend
Lavinia Woodward   (Facebook: Lavinia Woodward)

An Oxford University student who admitted to stabbing her boyfriend may avoid jail time after a judge determined that legal consequences could damage her future career as a surgeon. According to the Guardian, last year Lavinia Woodward punched and then stabbed her then-boyfriend in the leg with a bread knife at the Christ Church college during a drunken and drug-fueled spat. She continued to lob objects, including a laptop, at the man, a Cambridge University student she met on Tinder, reports the BBC. Judge Ian Pringle QC reviewed the case and admitted that such crimes were "pretty awful" and normally would warrant an immediate jail sentence, but he decided to defer Woodward’s sentencing for four months after deeming the incident a "one-off."

"To prevent this extraordinary, able young lady from following her long-held desire to enter the profession she wishes to would be a sentence which would be too severe," said Pringle. The 24-year-old student is studying to be a heart surgeon, and Christ Church will allow her to return in October because she "is that bright" and has a record publishing in medical journals. Her defense lawyer played up her intelligence, claiming it would be "almost impossible" for her to find work as a surgeon if it's discovered she has a conviction. The judge cited Woodward's drug addiction and past abuse from a partner as reasons to give her a second chance. She was given a restraining order, must undergo drug counseling, and cannot reoffend before her new sentencing date on September 25. (More stabbing stories.)

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