Former soldier jailed after stabbing partner 29 times and leaving her to die in pool of blood

Martina 'Tina' Turner said it was "miraculous" she survived her injuries when some people die from just one stab wound. Credit: Personal photo/MEN Media

A man has been jailed for attempted murder after stabbing his partner 29 times and leaving her to die in a pool of her own blood.

On 21 May 2021, college lecturer Martina Turner, known as Tina, was attacked in her Winlaton Mill home, Gateshead, by her partner Steven Wood.

The former soldier has bipolar and a criminal record for domestic violence.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the two had finished watching the news over dinner when Wood became agitated and stabbed Ms Turner repeatedly until his knife broke.

Ms Turner, 54, recalled a lack of clarity over Covid travel information as being the source of Wood's rage, as the two were planning a holiday together.

"Somehow I could feel unease," she said. "So I said 'I'm just going out for a while.'"

Ms Turner later found out that Wood had stopped taking his medication. Credit: NCJ Media

When Wood told her he was "feeling right", mother-of-three Ms Turner suggested he go for a bike ride or take their dog out for a walk, and told him she was going to go out.

"I can remember him shouting from behind me: 'you go nowhere'," she said. "Then he got the knife out. I didn't register what had happened, until I saw the blood running down my T-shirt on the front. I turned round and said; 'what are you doing?'"

After his initial attack, prosecutors explained, Wood retrieved another knife and plunged it into Ms Turner's chest.

"He said 'I need to finish you off because I'm not going to prison for you,'" she said.

"I begged for my life. At that point I thought, I needed to be really smart.

"I think you just go into survival mode and tell yourself not to panic now because any movement could be your last.

"I suggested he phone his son, because his son is everything to him. He grabbed his phone and stabbed me with the knife in the chest."

Ms Turner tried to escape Wood's attack by hiding in a cupboard, but as she did so she fell backwards, breaking two ribs.

"He held onto me with the knife while he spoke to his son on the phone," Ms Turner continued. "He broke down, cried and said 'I have done something really bad'."

Meanwhile Ms Turner tried to whisper down the phone asking Wood's son to call an ambulance and telling him she had been stabbed.

When Wood decided to leave, with the blade still embedded in Ms Turner's chest, he locked the doors and hid keys to slow down emergency services.

"My hands were very very slippery from all the blood but I managed to get my phone out, put it on the electricity meter box, and dial 999," continued Ms Turner.

"A really lovely woman stayed with me on the phone until the paramedics came. At that point I hadn't realised he had locked me in."

Paramedics from the North East Ambulance Service and a helicopter from the Great North Air Ambulance Service were sent to the scene.

Police tape at the scene in Winlaton Mill, Gateshead, where Tina Turner was stabbed 29 times. Credit: NCJ Media

After breaking a window to get to Ms Turner, emergency services decided she would be taken to the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI), in Newcastle.

"The paramedics came through the window and rescued me...All I can remember is saying 'I want to see my children grow up'. I think that makes you really strong and focused on surviving."

When Ms Turner arrived at hospital, medics discovered she had been stabbed 29 times and had wounds over her entire body, including her heart, spine, and legs.

Meanwhile, Wood was also being taken to the RVI after having attempted to take his own life.

Ms Turner spent six weeks in hospital and underwent multiple operations.

Wood was convicted for attempted murder on 17 January and on Friday 22 July was sentenced to life with a minimum of 12 years in prison.

Tina Turner, a college lecturer, said she would struggle to trust again. Credit: MEN Media

Following the sentencing, Ms Turner, who has previously worked in education, decided to share her story in the hope of showing people domestic abuse can take many forms.

“I was so besotted and so much in love with Steven," she said. "We had been living together over a year and had planned the rest of our lives together.

“I now have to live with the knowledge that the man I loved and tried to help, that I believed was a charming, empathetic and in his words 'a soulmate' could turn into a monster and attack me."

The victim believes Wood manipulated her caring nature and that she ignored the red flags which suggested something was not right.

“He was very insecure and needed constant reassurance that I loved him for who he was," she continued.

"He had never been violent but could be controlling and paranoid."

During the course of their relationship, controlling Wood told her that an ex-partner of his had fallen down the stairs during an argument.

She later found out from police that he had in fact pushed her down the stairs with a metal pole.

Now keen to help those in a similar position, she said she had one message.

"When someone starts to intimidate you, take it seriously, don’t wait until it’s too late and they attack you,” she said.

Anyone who has been affected by domestic abuse, or wants to report violence, inappropriate behaviour or any concerns is asked to get in touch with police immediately.

If you have concerns about a partner or a loved one you think could be at risk of domestic abuse, you can apply to use Clare’s Law – a national information request which checks a person’s record and is completely free and confidential.

Clare’s Law – Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme : Northumbria Police

Domestic abuse help and support

If you are in immediate danger always call the police, and always dial 999 if it is an emergency and press 55 if you can’t talk (only on mobile phones).

  • Codeword scheme - ANI

If you are experiencing domestic abuse and need immediate help, ask for ‘ANI’ in a participating pharmacy. ‘ANI’ stands for Action Needed Immediately but also phonetically sounds like the name Annie. If a pharmacy has the ‘Ask for ANI’ logo on display, it means they’re ready to help. They will offer you a private space, provide a phone and ask if you need support from the police or other domestic abuse support service.

  • Refuge

Refuge supports more than 6,000 clients on any one day, helping them rebuild their lives and overcome many different forms of violence and abuse - including domestic violence, sexual violence, so-called ‘honour’-based violence, human trafficking and modern slavery, and female genital mutilation.

If you, or someone you care about, is experiencing domestic abuse, you can phone The National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247.

  • Women's Aid

Women's Aid is a national charity working to end domestic abuse against women and children. For information and support, email or use the instant messaging service.

  • Victim Support

Victim Support helps people who have recently experienced domestic abuse as well as both men and women, weeks, months and years afterwards.

If you need to speak to someone, call its free, 24-hour Supportline on 080816 89111 or start a live chat any time.

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