Wednesday 23 August 2017

Aristocrat's ex-fiancée guilty of knife attack on Irish couple

Zeaphena Badley
Zeaphena Badley

Sam Corbishley

The ex-fiancée of a British royal has been found guilty of a frenzied knife attack on a Dublin couple who were on a trip to London.

Zeaphena Badley (35) repeatedly stabbed Oona McCabe in the head after slicing through the back of her right knee with a rusty Stanley blade as she walked into Burger King on London Street, Paddington.

She then cut the 24-year-old's boyfriend, Kevin Cannon, who is from Walkinstown, under the chin when he tried to intervene in the early hours of January 17, Southwark Crown Court heard.

After launching herself at Oona a second time, Badley repeatedly hacked at her head, leaving pools of blood on the fast food outlet's floor.

Badley was once engaged to a godson of Prince Charles. The court heard she launched another unprovoked attack on a stranger on Edgware Road just 36 hours earlier. Badley is currently serving a 20-week sentence for that attack, imposed in March.

A jury of five men and seven women took less than an hour to find her guilty of causing GBH with intent.

Oona McCabe and her boyfriend Kevin Cannon
Oona McCabe and her boyfriend Kevin Cannon

She was also convicted of two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm against Mr Cannon and passer-by Alfonso Moncada.

Badley has 21 convictions for 36 offences including arson, theft and a string of assaults.

The judge, Mr Recorder Andrew Wales, QC, ordered psychiatric reports ahead of sentence in around seven weeks' time.

The former Kensington resident was engaged to Eton-educated Nicholas Knatchbull, titled Lord Romsey, for 18 months before the wedding was called off in 2013. She was sleeping rough when she spotted the couple walking to the Burger King following a night out in Soho.

CCTV footage showed Badley slashing at Ms McCabe as they entered the restaurant before slicing Mr Cannon's face and dragging Ms McCabe to the ground where she resumed her attack.

The student later told jurors she also needed 11 stitches to the front of her head, 13 to the back of her head, and one to her face following attack.

During a brief appearance in court, Badley quickly grew increasingly aggressive when shown the CCTV of the attack for the first time. After insisting "they're the real criminals" she then stormed out and refused to be involved in the trial.

Ms McCabe and her boyfriend later gave evidence via video-link from Dublin.

Badley, formerly of Cromwell Road, Kensington, southwest London, denied grievous bodily harm with intent and two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm but was convicted by the jury.

Irish Independent

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