A PARANOID drug addict ‘left his friend for dead’ and only stopped his ‘frenzied’ attack when the knife snapped, a court heard.

Richard Smith told the jury at Worcester Crown Court he thought friend James Gillott was dead when he fled his blood-splattered groundfloor Malvern flat. The jury had already been shown the broken, bent and bloody knife Smith used to inflict 24 stab wounds and the heavy radiator he used to bludgeon his former friend around the head and push it down upon his neck as he lay on the floor pleading for his life.

The 32-year-old of North Malvern Road admits section 18 wounding with intent but denies attempted murder after the attack on November 13 last year which left the victim’s ear hanging off.

The 44-year-old also had injuries to his face, head, neck and back as well as defensive injuries to his hands and arms. Mr Gillott was so bloody from the attack he could not open his front door to escape, smashing his own kitchen window with a mug tree so he could scream for help.

Smith was examined by his barrister, Graham Henson, admitting he had taken ‘pretty much everything’ since the age of 18 including crack cocaine, heroin and cannabis, sometimes on top of a methadone prescription designed to wean him off heroin.

He also referred to ‘dark periods’ when he would binge on drugs. At the time he had been ‘sofa surfing’, sleeping at his mum’s house in Dixey Court, North Malvern Road, next door to the flat where the assault happened. Smith became ‘paranoid’ that Mr Gillott and his friend Jack Spacie had hacked his computer in the days before the attack.

He said of 999 calls he made two days before the attack: “In my own funny way I was trying to reach out for help.”

He said of the attack itself: “I must have blacked out and gone into a rage.”

Smith denied he would have taken the kitchen knife used to stab Mr Gillott from his mother's address, saying he must have picked it up at the flat. Mr Gillott’s evidence was the knife was not his. Smith was asked why he attacked his friend and said: “I can’t explain that. It was a horrible thing. I can’t put it into words it’s that terrible.”

Smith, who gave a no comment interview to police, said: “I thought I had killed him.”

Smith spent 'four or five days' in hospital after the attack because he took an overdose, saying he was trying to kill himself. Rebecca Wade, prosecuting, asked Smith if he had given Valium tablets to his victim before the attack to ‘subdue him’ but the defendant said he had been taking Valium too.

“You stabbed him with such force the knife snapped in your hand, didn’t it?” said Miss Wade to which he Smith replied 'yes'.

“You didn’t even have the decency to pick up the phone and and call an ambulance, even anonymously, to try and get this man help, did you? The reality is that you left him for dead, didn’t you?”

“Yes” replied Smith.

She said when he returned to his mum’s Smith ‘didn’t tell a soul’ what he had done, putting his blood-stained jogging bottoms under other clothes in the washing basket.

“In your mind someone was destined for a body bag. I’m going to suggest you intended that person to be James Gillott.

“Definitely not” said Smith.

The trial continues.