A WOMAN accused of stabbing a 13-year-old girl to death in a park in Doncaster on Valentine’s Day has a “troubled history” and has spent time in a psychiatric hospital, a court has heard.
Hannah Bonser, aged 26, went on trial accused of murdering Casey Lyanne-Kearney, who was fatally injured outside Elmfield Park in February.
Opening the case, prosecutor Graham Reeds QC told the jury: “Hannah Bonser is a woman with a troubled history, who was in regular contact with outreach workers at Rethink - which is a service which assists those in Doncaster with mental health difficulties. In October 2011 she had spent a short time in a psychiatric hospital in Doncaster.”
Bonser, of Cusworth House, St James’ Street, Hyde Park, denies murdering the McAuley Catholic High School pupil from Rossington.
Members of Casey’s family looked on from the public gallery in Sheffield Crown Court as the case began.
Three days before Casey’s death, Bonser told a friend she was going to kill her ex-boyfriend and threatened to “get anyone else who crossed her”, the court heard.
On the morning of Casey’s death, Bonser bought two kitchen knives, the jury heard.
Mr Reeds said: “It cannot be known why Hannah Bonser went to the park that afternoon. She later declined to answer police questions and she now claims to have no memory of what she did.”
Bonser stabbed Casey without warning as she passed her in the park, the court heard.
Mr Reeds said: “The attack was sudden and caught Casey completely unawares. There was no argument, no shouting, there was no warning that anything was about to happen.”
The prosecutor said it was likely Bonser will claim the partial defence of diminished responsibility which would reduce what she did to manslaughter.
But he said the prosecution rejected the claim that the defendant “was suffering from an abnormality of mental functioning which arose from a recognised medical condition.”
The trial continues.