By CHRIS BROOKE
A father who defended his family from drug-crazed thugs by wounding one with a Samurai sword has been cleared by a jury.
David Fullard, 47, was prosecuted for attacking the two strangers who forced their way into his home and threatened to rape his partner and kill his two teenage children.
He insisted he was a desperate man acting legally in self-defence and struck out once with the ornamental sword, because it was the only weapon to hand.
David Fullard, seen here at an earlier hearing with his partner Susan Neal, was prosecuted for attacking the strangers who forced their way into his home
The blow almost sliced off the ear of Michael Severs, one of the thugs.
The prosecution refused to accept that his actions amounted to lawful self-defence and argued it was 'over the top' to attack a man armed with a knuckleduster by using a 'battlefield weapon'.
The two thugs were both high on a cocktail of drink and drugs at the time, the court heard.
But after a five-day trial at Hull Crown Court, Mr Fullard, a builder, broke down in tears as he was found not guilty of unlawful wounding.
It ended a nine-month ordeal for a man described by neighbours as 'honest and caring'. He had faced the threat of a long prison term.
The case represents another landmark in the debate over how far a householder should be allowed to go in defending his home from an intruder.
Yesterday jobless Severs, 22, and Michael Smith, 19, escaped with a suspended prison sentence and 100 hours of community work after admitting affray at the court.
'Slap on the wrists': Jobless thugs Michael Smith (left) and Michael Severs (whose ear was almost severed) received suspended prison sentences
Judge Michael Mettyear then lifted a reporting restriction on the case.
Outside court Mr Fullard criticised the judge for allowing the men to get away with a 'slap on the wrists'.
He added: 'You cannot stand around and do nothing when someone-comes to your house and starts threatening your family.'
Mr Fullard has been supported throughout by partner Susan Neal, 53, and his sons Danny, 14, and Tom, 17, who were in the house during the incident in March last year.
He added: 'I only struck one blow with the sword. If there had been a walking stick or umbrella by the door I would have hit him with that.'
'You cannot stand around and do nothing when someone comes to your house and starts threatening your family'
The court heard Severs and Smith, who both have previous convictions for violence, vaguely knew Mr Fullard's elder son and knocked on the door of the family home in Brough, East Yorkshire, claiming he owed them £5 from earlier in the day.
It was a ruse to get cash but Smith barged into the living room while Mr Fullard was upstairs and threatened Miss Neal. She told the jury he picked up the ornamental sword and said: 'Do you want some of this?'
She said: 'They threatened to rape me, burn the house down, kill the kids and kill Dave.'
Guilty: Severs shows off the wounds he received from the Samurai sword
The house where the incident took place. The case represents another landmark in the debate over how far a householder should be allowed to go in defending his home from an intruder
Smith then ran out and Mr Fullard was confronted by Severs in the garden. The thug was armed with a spade and a knuckle-duster.
Mr Fullard told the jury he picked up the sword and 'hit him once' and intended for the 'flat of the sword' rather than the blade to connect. He then called police.
Mr Fullard was arrested and only later did police arrest Smith and Severs, who had his ear re-attached in hospital.
Mr Fullard said he was a desperate man acting legally in self-defence and struck out once with the ornamental sword (pictured) as it was the only weapo
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1249958/Cleared-Builder-chopped-thugs-ear-Samurai-sword-threatened-rape-kill-family.html#ixzz0fEP8K093
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