Published Oct 05, 2011A Northampton, England man who posed as Bring Me the Horizon singer Oliver Sykes online has been sent to prison for life after being convicted of kidnapping and attempted murder.
The UK's Daily Mail [via NME] reports that David Russell was sentenced today (October 5) to a minimum of 17-and-a-half years in prison after luring his victim, California resident Maricar Benedicto, overseas under the guise that he was the metal singer. The two met over Facebook sometime last year and arranged to meet at the Harlestone Firs forest this past April 1. Soon after they met, he attacked her.
Of the incident, prosecutor Christopher Donnellan explained: "He took her to an area of woodland off White Lane. He asked her to sit down on a fallen tree trunk and said he was going to blindfold her and said she would get a surprise or a present. He stood behind her, blindfolded her, asked her to put her head back, and her arms up. Although she did not see any implement because of the blindfold, the next thing she felt was her neck being sliced."
Benedicto managed to run away, but Russell, who admitted to the crimes, caught up with her, stabbed her four times, hit her in the face with a log and headbutted the victim. He was said to have shouted "Why won't you die? You've ruined my life. It's all your fault."
Russell then fled the scene, while Benedicto managed to get to a nearby house for help.
At Northampton Crown Court, Judge Charles Wide described Russell as "exceptionally dangerous" and noted that the damage he had done was both psychological and physical.
"The features of this case are truly horrifying. When she was able to escape, you intended to kill her and must have come very close. It must have been utterly terrifying and it went on for an extended period," he said. "This is one case when a life sentence is the only appropriate sentence."
Defence lawyer Steven Crouch described Russell as a first-time offender and "a troubled young man, very young, who committed an act in bizarre circumstances, never to be repeated."
Sykes himself has commented on the case, taking to his Twitter earlier today (October 5) to post: "Holy shit -- Guy nearly kills someone posing as me, not cool."