A teenager on trial for the attempted murder of a 35-year-old gay man has been found guilty.
Floyd Evans, 19, of Chester, was charged with the attempted murder and wounding with intent of Francisco Nascimento, who was stabbed in the chest, piercing his heart, in the City Walls area, a popular cruising ground, on 21 October last year.
Evans had been drinking on the night of the incident and had taken cocaine in the toilets of a pub.
Recorder Elgan Edwards said had it not been for the decisive action taken by people at the scene, including police officers and paramedics, Evans would have been facing a charge of murder.
Mr Nascimento spent time in intensive care following the stabbing and required emergency surgery.
Police believed the attack on Mr Nascimento, who works as a cleaner, was homophobic, given the area where it took place.
The judge said: “I regard this as a very worrying case, whether it is homophobic or not.”
Evans is due to be sentenced in May.
Speaking after the case on Friday, Det Insp Helen Spooner, who led the investigation, said: “The victim almost died as a result of the actions of Floyd Evans that night in the city centre.
“This was an unprovoked and violent attack on a man not known to him, which left him fighting for his life.
“He was stabbed to the chest, which pierced his heart. Had it not been for the skill and assistance of the medical team that battled to save his life, he would undoubtedly have died.
“The victim spent many days in intensive care and thankfully, physically he has recovered from this ordeal. But mentally he is destroyed. He will have to live with what happened to him for the rest of his life.
“The experience has been traumatic enough for the victim, but he was then made to relive what happened when Evans pleaded not guilty and the case ended up at trial.
“I hope that the successful conclusion of the case in some way helps to bring about a degree of closure for the victim and helps him to move forward with his life.”