Posted on February 18, 2022

Thug Who Dragged a Doctor Out of His House and Stabbed Him in Series of Terrifying Attacks on Strangers Is Jailed

Kate Dennett, Daily Mail, February 16, 2022

A teenager who stabbed a doctor nine times and sliced a warehouse worker across the face in two separate, unprovoked attacks has been jailed for at least 12 years.

Chanz Maximen dragged Adam Towler out of his home in Clifton, Bristol, on October 30, 2019, and stabbed him repeatedly in an attack that the doctor initially thought was a Halloween prank.

Chanz Maximen

Chanz Maximen

A few weeks later, Maximen, then 17, sliced Wojtek Rozmiarek across the face as the warehouse worker walked home from a night shift in another random knife attack.

A jury found him guilty of the attempted murder of Dr Towler, grievous bodily harm with intent of Mr Rozmiarek and two counts of possession of a knife in December.

At Bristol Crown Court on Wednesday, Maximen, now 19, was jailed for life with a minimum term of 12 years.

In the first horrific assault, Maximen knocked on Dr Towler’s front door and shone a light through the letterbox.

Dr Towler initially thought the knock was a Halloween prank, but Maximen pulled him into the road and stabbed him nine times, including a blow that missed his heart by two centimetres.

The defendant told him, ‘You killed the girl’, a phrase that he has never explained and meant nothing to the victim or investigators.

Maximen left the doctor for dead in the street and left the immediate area, but he did not go far.

Dr Towler, a former trauma specialist, managed to crawl inside his house but was bleeding so much that he was initially unable to use his phone keypad or facial recognition to call 999.

When he eventually made the call, Maximen returned to the address and could be heard throwing his full body weight against the front door trying to force his way in.

Dr Towler described the door frame as ‘flexing’ under his weight, the court heard.

Maximen was not arrested immediately and on November 20, 2019, he targeted warehouse worker Wojtek Rozmiarek as he walked home after a night shift.

Mr Rozmiarek was sitting on a bench downloading a podcast when Maximen approached him from behind and sliced him across the face.

At Maximen’s sentencing hearing on Wednesday, Judge William Hart remarked that he was satisfied that the defendant had intended to slit Mr Rozmiarek’s throat.

The night after attacking Mr Rozmiarek, Maximen followed student Annabel Everitt home, knocked on her door and tried to force his way in with a knife but was disturbed by the victim’s housemate, the court was told.

Police were called and sighted Maximen nearby, leading to officers chasing him through Westfield Park before catching him at Clifton Down train station.

Video footage shows Maximen running across a train platform before officers tackle him to the ground and arrest him. He was found to be carrying two knives.

Maximen denied the attempted murder of Dr Towler, grievous bodily harm with intent of Mr Rozmiarek and two counts of possession of a knife, but was convicted after a trial last December.

He admitted a lesser charge of wounding Mr Rozmiarek.

He was cleared of the aggravated burglary of Ms Everitt’s address, though the judge said he was ‘quite satisfied’ that he was the individual who had forced his way in.

Judge Hart said it was evident that the jury was unsure what Maximen’s motive for entry was.

Edd Hetherington, for Maximen, told the court his client had suffered a developmental disorder that was a combination of a learning difficulty and a communication disorder.

Judge Hart said there was no ‘logical explanation’ for his offending and said it was not due to ‘any recognised mental illness or diagnosed personality disorder’.

He added: ‘There is no logical explanation for any of your offending other than that you are a highly dangerous young man with a wholly distorted view of life and appropriate conduct.

‘It is not due to any recognised mental illness or diagnosed personality disorder and I can only conclude that it is simply because, for whatever reason, you are just like that, perhaps as a consequence of the impact of your earlier life experiences and the difficulties under which you labour.’

Mr Heatherington said Maximen had a supportive home life and his mother had been a constant presence throughout the trial.

She was too distressed to attend the sentencing hearing, but the defendant’s grandfather was in the public gallery, Mr Heatherington said.

Jailing Maximen for life with a minimum term of 12 years, Judge Hart described him as a ‘highly dangerous’ man.

He said: ‘This course of conduct demonstrates that, despite your youth and lack of previous convictions, you are a highly dangerous young man, in both the colloquial and legal sense.

‘Indeed, everything that I have read about you, together with my own assessment of the evidence at trial and your evidence in particular, has underlined and fortified that sad conclusion.’

The judge added: ‘There is no way of knowing when, if ever, you will cease to be as dangerous an individual as you are now and as you were in October and November 2019.

‘You continue to deny, albeit somewhat half-heartedly at times, your offending and there is no way in which your dangerousness can be satisfactorily addressed or remediated.’

Dr Towler, who now develops medical software, gave a victim impact statement in court, where he expressed his concern for the defendant and his long jail sentence.

Describing a holiday he took in the aftermath of the attack, he said: ‘Amid all the great experiences I had on it I never stopped thinking about you.

‘I don’t know why but sometimes I would feel bad that I had this great freedom but you didn’t – I wondered if you had just made a mistake, albeit a big one, or been unlucky.

‘When I compared my position with what I imagined yours to be, it sort of didn’t seem fair, although I know that’s hard to understand.’

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Chief Inspector Kristina Windsor, said: ‘The very thought of being randomly attacked by a stranger with a knife in your own home or while sat on a public bench is terrifying and I’d like to praise the immense bravery and courage all the victims and witnesses have shown.

‘I’d also like to reassure the public that attacks of this nature are extremely rare in Avon and Somerset.

‘When they do take place we take them extremely seriously and put all the resources required into catching those responsible.’