Athlete Lauren Jeska admits Alexander Stadium triple stabbing

Lauren Jeska

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Jeska appeared at Birmingham Crown Court via video link

A fell-running champion has admitted stabbing three top athletics staff at a major UK stadium.

Lauren Jeska, 41, admitted attempting to murder former Bristol rugby player Ralph Knibbs at the Alexander Stadium in Birmingham on March 22.

She also pleaded guilty to causing actual bodily harm to Kevan Taylor and Tim Begley, who tried to intervene, and two counts of possessing a knife.

Jeska, of Powys, will be sentenced at Birmingham Crown Court on 15 November.

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Ralph Knibbs was at Birmingham Crown Court on Thursday to hear Jeska plead guilty to trying to kill him

Police said Mr Knibbs suffered life-threatening images after being stabbed in the head and neck, and is still recovering from the attack.

The former Bristol RFC centre and head of human resources and welfare at UK Athletics, was in court to hear Jeska enter her pleas via video link from HMP Foston Hall in Derbyshire.

The court heard the injuries of Jeska’s other victims – accountant Mr Begley and finance director Mr Taylor – were “not of the most serious order”.

Prosecutor Timothy Atkins QC said not guilty pleas to charges of wounding were acceptable to the Crown.

“I have had the opportunity of consulting those who instruct me and they have spoken with the complainants in this matter,” he said.

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Jeska’s defence lawyer told the court more psychiatric reports would be needed before sentencing

“During the course of the attack (on Mr Knibbs), Mr Taylor and Mr Begley went to his assistance and both were injured.

“Thankfully their injuries were not of the most serious order and so the pleas to wounding are acceptable to the Crown given the pleas that have been entered.”

Although Jeska admitted possessing two kitchen knives, she denied possessing a bread knife which had been left in a bag before the attack on 51-year-old Mr Knibbs.

Judge Philip Parker QC was told Jeska, of Wesley Terrace in Machynlleth, had been the subject of psychiatric assessment but further reports would be necessary before she is sentenced.

Defending, Julie Warburton said a diagnosis of autism may be raised at the next hearing, which would be invited to consider whether a “medical disposal” would be available to the sentencing judge.

She was remanded in custody.

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Birmingham’s Alexander Stadium hosts Diamond League events and the national championships

Athlete Lauren Jeska admits Alexander Stadium triple stabbing

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