A PARANOID schizophrenic who slashed the face of a prison officer was detained under the Mental Health Act after being assessed as posing a “severe risk to the public”.

Robert Clarke, aged 48, attacked guard Sam Kedward at Bridgend’s Parc Prison using a sharpened plastic spoon after “hearing voices tormenting him”, Cardiff Crown was told.

Prosecutor Lucy Crowther said the defendant had used the makeshift weapon to cut the top of his ear and eye.

She told Judge Michael Fitton QC that Clarke had first punched and spat at Mr Kedward before grappling with him on the floor and slashing him because he didn’t want to be placed back in his cell when he was required to.

The court heard that while in the jail, the defendant had “heard voices tormenting him” and had felt he was being “persecuted”.

Clarke was in prison while on remand after committing offences in Abergavenny four months earlier.

Miss Crowther said that he had burgled a Monmouthshire Housing home in the town’s Poplars Close on May 22, 2017 where police had found him asleep in a bedroom after smashing his way in.

He was “difficult and obstructive” while being arrested by the officers.

Three days later, she told the court how he was seen in an alleyway at 10.20am in the morning by a contractor committing an act outraging public decency.

The prosecutor said: “The defendant was also making sexual gestures to the wall as members of the public walked past.”

Clarke, who was represented by his barrister Karl Williams, pleaded guilty to unlawfully wounding Mr Kedward, burglary, resisting a police officer, criminal damage and committing an act outraging public decency.

Miss Crowther said the defendant had 21 previous convictions for 43 offences, including dishonesty and drug-related matters.

Clarke, of Springfield University Hospital, a psychiatric unit on Glenburnie Road, Tooting, London, was detained by Judge Fitton under the Mental Health Act.