A MAN who stabbed his flatmate in Chard had suffered from a sudden onset of psychosis when he carried out the surprise attack.

Liudas Steponavicius, of Holyrood Street, has since been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and is responding well to treatment, the court heard.

The 30-year-old carried out a sudden and unprovoked attack on his flatmate, Donatas Rinkauskas, on March 21 this year.

At Taunton Crown Court last week, Gordon Richings, prosecuting, said that Steponavicius had stabbed Rinkauskas four times with a kitchen knife, with two causing serious injury.

The victim, who received severe blows to his back and shoulder, then got free and made his way to the nearby newsagents where he asked them to call an ambulance.

The defendant was arrested and has since undergone three formal psychiatric assessments.

Despite responding very well to early treatment, the court heard from one of Steponavicius’ doctors that he would still require at least 18 more months in hospital.

Judge Paul Cook decided to sentence him to an indefinite hospital order. When doctors decide he is fit to be released, Steponavicius will have to come before a panel before he is allowed back into the public.