A VIOLENT thug who stabbed a woman in the neck and back must serve his 16-year sentence after his appeal was thrown out.

James Thomas attempted to murder 25-year-old Alexandra Vignon by stabbing her in the neck and back on November 29 last year in St Benet’s Road, Prittlewell.

After being handed 16 years in jail, with five years on licence, in February, he had attempted to appeal it in order to get it reduced.

However, at a hearing at the Court of Appeal on October 8, his case was dismissed.

Martin Terry, cabinet member for community safety at Southend Council, welcomed the news.

He said: “Knife crime is something we’re really trying to combat in Southend, and the possession of knives in general.

“In this case he was carrying a knife around with him. If he didn’t have the knife in the first place his victim would not have suffered such horrendous injuries.

“We’re making good progress with our knife arches in the town, which we hope will develop into an even bigger deterrent.

“I, and I think the rest of the council, will be very glad to hear the news that his sentence was not reduced and he will receive justice for his actions.”

Thomas, 24, of Kingsway, Westcliff, had armed himself with a knife and walked the streets of Southend in a bid to kill someone to “satisfy his urges”.

Following his horrific attack on Ms Vignon, he fled the scene, but later handed himself in.

His victim knew nothing of him before the attack happened, as he had picked her out at complete random.

Doctors believed the scarf she was wearing may have saved her life.

During his sentencing, the court heard a psychiatrist could not find anything clinically wrong with Thomas.

Ms Vignon previously described Thomas’s sentence as “a joke” saying that it had gone down from 24 years to 21, and decreased to 16 because he had entered an early guilty plea - which entitled a defendant to a one-third reduction in their sentence.

She said: “I have 11 stab wounds on the top of my body, some on my face, some on my neck, I could have easily died.”