Pub chef who stabbed woman was shopped to police by his own mother

Pub chef who stabbed woman was shopped to police by his own mother who recognised him in CCTV image

  •  James Nangle, 29, had to hand himself in when his mother saw the picture
  • An appeal was launched after student Isabelle Hall suffered wounds in 2021

A chef who stabbed a woman was shopped to police by his mother after she recognised him in CCTV.

James Nangle, 29, was forced to hand himself in after the picture was circulated by detectives – and seen by his mother.

A media appeal had been launched after a student Isabelle Hall suffered wounds to the upper right side of her body and to her right breast in December 2021.

Nangle’s mother, who lives in Northern Ireland, was alerted to an article by his father, from whom she is divorced.

A jury heard that having informed police, she then phoned her son to say she had told officers he would contact them.

Pub chef James Nangle, 29, was forced to hand himself in to police after he was recognised on CCTV by his mother

The pub chef from Canterbury, Kent, voluntarily went to a police station the next day and denied being involved in any assault.

But now he now faces jail, having been convicted by a jury on Wednesday August 23 of unlawful wounding.

Canterbury Crown Court heard he stabbed the victim with a sharp implement as she was being punched and having her hair pulled by Elle McAllister outside a pool and snooker lounge in the early hours of December 8, 2021.

The prosecution said that having ‘slyly and spitefully’ wounded the student, he then acted as if he was ‘nothing more than a friendly peacekeeper’.

But giving evidence at his trial this week, Nangle maintained he had nothing in his right hand when he gave Ms Hall what he described as ‘a dig’ with his fist in her ribs to break the two women up, and had not caused her any injury.

Recalling the moment he realised police wanted to trace him, he said he was ‘terrified, scared, and very confused’.

He said shortly before the phone call from his mum on April 7 last year, a colleague at the pub where he worked had shown him a screenshot of the media appeal.

He told the court: ‘I didn’t have a clue what was going on.

‘I didn’t really make a decision there and then what I should do but then almost immediately afterwards I received a phone call from my mother.

‘She lives in Northern Ireland. She told me that my father had seen the online article and contacted her. My parents are divorced.

‘My mum had then immediately called Kent Police and identified me and then she called me to say she had told them I would respond as soon as possible.’

He reported to Canterbury police station the following morning and gave a prepared statement denying he had caused any injuries to Ms Hall.

But outlining the case against Nangle at trial, prosecutor Kieran Brand said it was fortunate the victim had not suffered more serious injuries.

Ms Hall had been socialising with friends in the city centre and was having a cigarette outside Cousins in the early hours when Nangle together with McAllister and another woman walked past.

None of them knew each other but a joke was shared between Ms Hall and Nangle.

At that point, McAllister stopped, turned around and walked back towards Ms Hall, shouting ‘what’s your ******* issue?’

Ms Hall replied there was no issue and that she was just agreeing with what Nangle had said.

The victim and her friends remained calm and friendly as attempts were made to placate her, but she responded by asking if Ms Hall ‘wanted a ******* fight’.

He added that as Ms Hall reacted by telling McAllister to ‘**** off with her friends’, she was suddenly punched to her left cheekbone, grabbed by the hair and pulled downwards.

Mr Brand said: ‘Whilst at first blush it appeared that he [Nangle] was playing peacekeeper, the Crown say he himself slyly and spitefully assaulted Isabelle himself.

‘And they weren’t punches. They were blows using some sort of sharp implement. In short, this defendant stabbed her.’

‘It is unclear what he’s holding but the shape of his hand and his movements suggest there was something in it.’

After, Ms Hall spotted some blood on her top in the area of her right breast but thought nothing of it.

Nangle is facing jail after being convicted of unlawful wounding at Canterbury Crown Court

It was only when she got home a few hours later that she saw her wounds – a circular puncture to her right-hand side near her ribcage that was still bleeding and a larger cut to her right breast.

She was taken by ambulance to Ashford’s William Harvey Hospital.

During cross-examination, Nangle told the court he had house keys and a pub key in his pocket.

But he denied the CCTV showed him holding a key, or any kind of sharp object, ‘ready to use.’

McAllister form Canterbury, Kent had been due to stand trial accused of assault causing actual bodily harm to Ms Hall but her guilty plea to the less serious offence of assault by beating was accepted by the prosecution before the jury was sworn.

Both Nangle and McAllister were released on bail until their sentencing hearing on September 28, which will be held at Maidstone Crown Court.

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