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Good evening and welcome to BBC London News.
A man who killed a mother-of-two, while her husband listened
helplessly on the phone will spend an indefinite time in
Nicola Cross was stabbed to death by a complete stranger as she tried
to stop him from kidnapping her two children at the family
Her family said she enjoyed the perfect life.
37-year-old Nicola Cross from Hemel Hempstead had a
loving husband and two adored young children but a random and brutal act
Warehouse worker Marcin Porczynski was suffering from paranoid
schizophrenia when he broke into her home in September last year,
It led to an outpouring of grief on Dunlin Road
where Mrs Cross was a much loved member of the community.
In sentencing Marcin Porczynski, the judge said the circumstances
in which you killed Nicola Cross were utterly horrific
and senseless and represented every parent and husband's worst
He said, you've left the Cross family utterly devastated and two
young children without the wonderful mother who so loved and cared for
When she discovered the break-in, Nicola called her husband
Danny, seen here leaving the court, who was away for work.
He told the judge in a statement, that phone
call plays over and over in my head along with Nic's screams
I will never forgive myself for not being there to protect her.
And he could see no future happiness, no
end to this trauma until my life comes to an end.
With no history of violence, experts say there was no way of predicting
I think here, that it was really a tragic and unforeseen incident.
I don't think there should be much blame attached to anyone.
The person was extremely ill and what happened could not really
Friends and neighbours who live on this tight-knit estate
in Hemel Hempstead supported the family through the court
proceedings and the judge paid tribute to the dignity
Marcin Porczynski admitted killing Nicola Cross,
telling doctors he had to sacrifice her to
He will serve an indefinite term at a psychiatric unit.
The judge described the young mother as heroic but ultimately defenceless
Now, you'd expect the London Ambulance Service to be busy
at this time of year, but it's just recorded its busiest
It says incidents involving alcohol were the most common cause
for a call-out to people in their twenties and Londoners are
Gareth Furby's report does contain flashing images.
We're with a paramedic whose duty is to respond
in minutes to emergencies, but in the early hours
of Saturday morning, he is dealing with something else.
Honest truth, he's only just sort of started coming around.
This call is to a kebab shop in Hackney, to a 25-year-old
What's going on tonight, what's happened?
What's happened is too much to drink, a condition
that is entirely self-inflicted, but the emergency services
It seems that she does need to be looked after and is vulnerable.
She needs to be somewhere to be for a few hours just to get
to a level where she can get home safely by herself.
That safe place was at hospital and at the weekend it seems this
In London, there were more than 16,000 emergency calls
to the ambulance service, making it their busiest
Another call-out was to the City of London where they were several
exclusive Christmas events, but at one, a man was
I think he'd been out on a work do and a lot of people were intoxicated
and caused a fight and he's taken a few punches to the face.
An arrest was made, but after being examined by the paramedic,
the victim decided to decline hospital treatment and
But in many other cases at the weekend, it was a different
story and pre-Christmas drinking was often to blame.
If someone is unconscious, we need to get to those
patients really quickly because there could be an underlying
condition like a serious head injury or a serious illness that is causing
So we have to prioritise those patients.
And clearly when it is just alcohol-related we do have other
critical patients that we need to get to so we've managed it,
But on the street, it was often challenging.
Here, the paramedics' vehicle was flagged down
And there were no weapons? No.
And the paramedic called the police as well as treating the man.
Londoners will continue to celebrate the build-up to Christmas,
but the emergency services have to deal with the fallout
London schools could be facing bigger class sizes and fewer
That's according to the out-going chief inspector of schools.
Sir Michael Wilshaw leaves office next week after five years.
He also said it's essential that schools do all they can
to prevent vulnerable pupils being exposed to radicalisation.
Our Education Reporter Marc Ashdown has been speaking to him.
"Ofsted rates the school as" - one phrase which can make or break
For five years, Sir Michael Wilshaw has been at the helm.
London schools, he says, are in the best year ever,
but a new funding formula is likely to hit many.
I think it's going to be more difficult.
There's no question any funding cut or any funding
It might mean there will be reductions in staffing.
It might mean that schools might not be able to appoint support
staff in the numbers they were previously doing.
For most of his tenure, Michael Gove was Education Secretary.
To say he was controversial is an understatement.
I obviously didn't agree with him on everything but I suppose
the questions that have to be asked are, is giving more power to people
Was our curriculum too soft? Yes.
Was our examination system not competing
Yes, it wasn't competing, so he addressed those issues
and somebody had to do that and he did it.
And occasionally heaps of opprobrium were poured upon him,
but I supported him in doing those things.
He cites the Trojan horse affair as his biggest challenge.
Fears surfaced of possible plots to radicalise schools,
One of the great dangers of autonomy in some of the schools,
most of the schools we're talking about in the the Trojan horse
Those governors with malign intent did what they did partly
because they realised that there wasn't sufficient
The local authority had washed its hands of these schools
They felt that they could bring in their own particular ideologies
and I think we've got to learn from that.
We don't do enough to promote good leadership in the country.
I'm sad at the demise of the National College
of School Leadership, which was Tony Blair's idea,
How do we get great leaders into unfashionable places?
That's going to be the big challenge over the next
few years, particularly with diminishing budgets.
Do you think it has been an outstanding performance?
That's for others to make a judgment.
I've challenged the education system in this country to do better.
That's caused trouble from time to time, and I have spoken
out from time to time, and I have challenged
But hopefully people, when they look back at my time
in office, will say, he was in it for the right reason,
because he wanted to see children getting a good deal.
Sir Michael Wilshaw talking to our Education Reporter Marc Ashdown.
That's it for now from me, but let's find out what the weather's up
It's feeling a bit colder this week with temperatures actually going up
and down for the next few weeks or so. We have some cheery Christmas
lights in the market here. And here in Trafalgar Square. We have the
weather for the week ahead in the run-up to Christmas. It will be
really quite changeable this week. No two days will be the same.
Tomorrow will be dry and bright with sunshine. After that it will turn
quite unsettled. Some rain around at times and quite blustery as we head
to the end of the week heading towards Christmas. Overnight
tonight, a rain system clearing westward. Some clear spells here and
there with temperatures of five or six as we head into the morning.
Some rural spots could see frost on the grass and isolated mist and fog
patches, but it will not be the widespread mist and fog we've seen
over the last few days. Tomorrow will be dry and bright with sunshine
around as well. Not a bad looking day, but it will be a touch cooler
with temperatures between six and eight Celsius. Wednesday, turning
mild again. Temperatures peaking at nine or 10 Celsius, but some
outbreaks of rain here and there and it will be great, drab and gloomy.
That's how we will start the day on Thursday as well. Heading towards
the end of the week, cooler and turning windy. Will it be a white
Christmas? Probably not across London. It's quite likely it might
be across the rest of the country, so keep an eye on the National
forecast. It will stay quite windy. That's what we know about Christmas.
around, windy, but with dry and around, windy, but with dry and
bright spells. Heavy weather is brewing, it will
not reach us just yet. It will take a good few days before the stormy
weather reaches us. At the moment, it's just potential, nothing is
certain, but it will be different to what we've had over the last few
weeks, it's been so calm. We have a jet stream raging out of North
America making a beeline for the UK. It has peaked at jet level height,
blowing in excess of 200 mph, and it might whip up to max storms we are
watching. Friday had coming close to northern Britain, and then another