Brothers stabbed and airlifted after meeting to plan dad’s funeral turns violent

A pair of brothers were stabbed after a family meeting to plan their dad's funeral arrangements turned violent, a court heard.

Mark Hooper was stabbed in the back and the neck, while his brother Jason was knifed in the stomach, at their mother’s house in Torquay, Devon, on October 31 last year.

The pair were stabbed by their sister’s partner Kevin Simmons, 61, who used his “rabbiting knife” on them.

A jury at Exeter Crown Court has been played filmed footage from a neighbour's home showing Simmons running down the street to confront the two men, Devon Live reports.

In the footage shown in court, Mark Hooper can be seen nearly collapsing after being stabbed three times, while his brother was stabbed once after punching Simmons in the face.

Simmons admits wounding both victims but denies any intent to harm them.

Prosecutor Ms Heather Hope said the victims' father had died two days before, with the two brothers agreeing to have Sunday lunch at their mother's house and discuss the funeral, along with their sister and her partner, Simmons.

Shortly after arriving in late morning the meeting "took a turn for the worse" and there was a row, said Ms Hope.

She claims Jason Hooper walked out with the intention of getting back into his car and leaving.

He was followed by his sister who started “banging on his windows” and telling him he wasn't going anywhere, said the prosecutor.

She claims Mark Hooper ran from the house, closely followed by Simmons and other members of the family.

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Mark Hooper said he tried to stop his sister confronting his brother at the car.

"When he [Simmons] got there, he stabbed Mark Hooper in the back and the neck three times," said Ms Hope.

He suffered a 4cm deep wound to the side of his neck that just missed his spinal cord, a stab to the other side of his neck and a 5cm deep wound to the chest that fractured his scapula and rib.

A doorbell camera at a neighbour's house showed the family members still squabbling while Mark Hooper keeled over against a car.

Jason Hooper then punched Simmons in the face, the court heard.

"What Simmons then did was, with the knife still in hand, is stab Jason Hooper to the stomach," said Ms Hope.

The wound penetrated the abdominal wall near the belly button.

Simmons initially told police that the wounds had been caused by a potato peeler he happened to have in his hand at the time, but now admits he brought the “rabbiting” knife to the house but only had it in his hand by accident, the court heard.

He claimed the two brothers had been attacking his partner and he had “lashed out”.

He said he had not intended to hurt anybody but claims the brothers had assaulted him.

The trial continues.

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