A MAN was slashed in the face with a knife in a vicious attack on a busy town centre road.
Simon Mitchell, 26, was left soaked in blood after the daylight attack on the A644 Huddersfield Road in Mirfield.
Mr Mitchell fled into the road as he and two or three others tried to escape their attackers.
Police want to talk to passing drivers who may have witnessed the drama.
Mr Mitchell, believed to live in Mirfield, was attacked near to the Railway pub in Huddersfield Road, close to the junction with Doctor Lane, at 8.20pm on Wednesday.
Mr Mitchell was with two or three others when a car screeched to a halt and three men got out and gave chase.
Punches were thrown while the knifeman went for Mr Mitchell in what witnesses said appeared to be a targeted attack.
The Examiner understands Mr Mitchell was slashed several times across the chest, slicing open his clothing.
He was then slashed on both sides of his face and left bleeding profusely.
He also suffered defensive wounds to his hands and arms as he tried to protect himself.
Mr Mitchell collapsed on a grass verge outside the Royd Court sheltered housing complex across the road from the pub.
Two care staff from the complex rushed to help and administered first aid and an ambulance was called.
Mr Mitchell was treated at Dewsbury District Hospital and was yesterday said to be in a “stable” condition.
Another man, aged 39, went to Dewsbury District Hospital half-an-hour later with a puncture wound to his ribs area.
Mirfield businessman Martin Ibberson and wife Sue, a district nurse, stopped to help.
Mr Ibberson, 48, said: “Two staff from Royd Court and another lad were helping him.
“They were using tea towels to stop the bleeding, and he was bleeding quite badly.
“We could see he was losing a lot of blood. He was completely ashen in colour and paramedics were struggling to find a vein which showed his body was starting to shut down.”
Mr Ibberson, who runs a business centre in Mirfield town centre, said it was shocking the attack happened in broad daylight.
“It was a lovely summer’s evening with people sitting outside the Railway pub in the sunshine. It also happened right under a CCTV camera,” he added.
Police said at 9pm a report came in from Dewsbury District Hospital that a 39-year-old man had been admitted with a puncture wound.
He was transferred to Bradford Royal Infirmary where he was also said to be “stable.”
The landlady at the Railway said what had happened was nothing to do with her pub and she declined to comment further.
Local people were also shocked and Frank Hudson, 73, of Royd Court, said: “It’s a sign of the times but it’s not what you expect in Mirfield. It’s usually a pretty peaceful place.”
The Examiner understands Mr Mitchell was in a group of men who wanted a taxi.
He approached a friend near the Railway who was heading to a nearby shop.
The man offered to ring for a taxi. Shortly after the attackers’ car pulled up and the men were chased into the road.
A police spokesman said the attack resulted from a “dispute” between two groups of men.
The attackers sped off in a silver Renault Megane which drove down Huddersfield Road towards Cooper Bridge. The car was found in Horbury, near Wakefield, in the early hours.
Police arrested four men aged 20, 29, 32 and 43 on suspicion of violent disorder and are hunting a fifth. They were still in custody last night.
Police urgently want to trace several motorists who may have vital evidence.
They want to speak to the drivers of a dark coloured BMW saloon car which was close to the attack when it happened.
As the suspects got into the Megane, a grey Jaguar, a red Vauxhall Astra, a purple Peugeot 106, a black VW Passat saloon and a silver Mercedes estate all had to stop.
Witnesses, or anyone with information, should contact Det Sgt Guy Shackleton or Det Con Cath Lowdon at Dewsbury CID via 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.