A JUDGE's decision not to jail an Oxford University student for stabbing her boyfriend risks putting male victims of domestic abuse off coming forward, a campaigner has warned.

Lavinia Woodward admitted stabbing her Cambridge University boyfriend with a bread knife on December, 30 last year.

But she was spared jail by a judge so as not to damage her career.

Instead the Christ Church student received a 10-month prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.

Mark Brooks, the chairman of the ManKind Initiative, has branded Woodward's sentence "unfair" and said she would have been expected to go to prison had she been a man.

And the Solicitor General, Robert Buckland, has said that the sentence cannot be challenged at the Court of Appeal because it does 'not within the unduly lenient scheme' .

He said: "We are currently looking at ways to extend the scheme to cover more offences."

Woodward may be able to return to her studies after the dean of Christ Church said her actions would not lead to her automatically being kicked out of the college.

The Very Rev Professor Martyn Percy, said Woodward was not currently studying at Oxford, having voluntarily suspended her medical studies.

He said: "The question of her future will now be decided by the university, which has procedures in place when a student is the subject of a criminal conviction."