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A 76-year-old man in Kensington, Liverpool slashed his throat right after a Liverpool Crown Court judge handed down his 32-month jail sentence Monday. Leslie Marrs, who was found guilty and admitted to charges of sexual assault, slit the right side of his neck just seconds after Judge Stuart Driver warned the dock officer of the defendant’s intentions of taking his own life before he would reach the prison facility.

Judge Driver said Marr’s had previously told probation he would commit suicide prompting the judge to tell the dock officer to handle the defendant with care.

According to the Liverpool Echo, Marrs took out a craft blade he had concealed in his suit and slit his neck twice before the dock officer was able to grapple and pry the blade from him.

While waiting for paramedics to arrive, security staff and the dock officer administered first aid and pressed paper towels on the defendant's neck lacerations. First responders and an ambulance rushed to the Crown Court and attended to Marrs in the cells.

The courtroom was then cleared of attending spectators and was forced to temporarily close its doors to allow a thorough cleaning as the defendant was taken to hospital for treatment. None of the attending court officers sustained injuries during the incident.

Marr’s conviction stemmed from his teenage victim’s complaint after she had confided in her youth worker that she was sexually assaulted by the former. The ex-army veteran, in an interview with investigators, claimed that he had been discussing pubic hair with the teenage girl and then touched her vaginal area.

Prosecutors said investigators found a photograph of his penis on his mobile phone at which Marrs admitted to taking the photo. He claimed he did not present the photo to her, but said the girl may have seen it.

According to the victim’s mother, the girl suffered nightmares and had taken to inflicting self-harm after the assault took place. In her impact statement, the mother said she believes Marrs knew what he was doing and that he had been grooming her daughter from the start.

The defendant’s lawyer, Paul Lewis, cited that his client suffers from a number of mental health problems along with chronic lung and heart issues. He also told the court that although Marrs has previous convictions none of them were sexual offences.

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