The fallen former fiancée of Prince Charles’ godson has been jailed for nine-and-a-half years after launching a frenzied knife attack on two tourists to escape living on the streets.
Zeaphena Badley, 35, sliced through the back of Oona McCabe’s 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, under the chin when he tried to intervene, Southwark Crown Court heard.
As Mr Cannon then turned to check on his girlfriend, Badley launched herself at the Irishwoman a second time, repeatedly hacking at her head leaving pools of blood on the fast food outlet’s floor.
‘On the face of it there was no history or reason behind the attack,’ prosecutor Tom Nicholson told jurors during her trial back in June.
‘Indeed, the only apparent reason was the defendant wanted to go to prison rather than live on the street.’
When Badley was told she was going to be arrested for causing grievous bodily harm she replied: ‘Brilliant.’
Badley has 21 convictions for 36 offences including arson, theft and a string of assaults against members of the public and police officers alike dating back to 1999.
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 over to the Burger King following a night out in Soho.
‘They had never seen each other before, they had never talked to each other,’ said the prosecutor.
‘She was just effectively unlucky to be there at the time when the defendant chose to make her attack.’
Shocking 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 the vicious attack which left her covered in blood.
‘She lunged out, grabbed Ms McCabe by the hair and struck her repeatedly in the head, cutting her with the Stanley knife blade, and shouting about wanting to be put back in jail,’ added Mr Nicholson.
Mr Cannon, aided by concerned passer-by Alfonso Moncada who suffered a cut on his finger, eventually restrained Badley before police arrived.
Badley could be heard on police body-worn footage replying ‘brilliant’ when being arrested.
But she quickly grew increasingly aggressive when shown CCTV of the attack for the first time.
After confirming ‘Yes, that’s me’, she pointed out that ‘he’s holding me’ as Mr Cannon tried to restrain her.
Badley continued to claim she was outnumbered at her sentence today, repeatedly interrupting the proceedings saying ‘it was two against one’.
The judge, Mr Recorder Andrew Wales, QC, handed her an extended sentence on the grounds she poses a significant risk to the public.
‘In the early hours it was an unprovoked you walked up behind a stranger,’ he said.
‘You slashed her leg behind the knee.
‘It required 16 stitches and caused deep tissue damage.
‘That in itself was a very serious offence, but that was just the start.
‘You followed her and her boyfriend into the Burger King and committed further unprovoked attacks on her.
‘You repeatedly slashed at her head with a stanley knife.
‘I have viewed the CCTV and read her statement and it’s hardly surprising that what she endured has left her fearful and traumatised.
‘This was a savage attack without warning on a complete stranger.
‘She must have been terrified and it’s no exaggeration to say you could have killed her.’
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.
She was jailed for nine and a half years for grievous bodily harm with intent, with 16 months concurrent for the two counts of ABH.
Badley would have been in line to inherit a £100m fortune as the 9th Baroness Brabourne following her engagement to Lord Romsey in 2010.
The pair met in rehab.
After the relationship to Knatchbull ended she moved out of his 60-room mansion Broadlands Estate in Hampshire and has briefly been homeless on the streets on London.