Man seen smiling after knifing neighbour
SCHIZOPHRENIA, not taking his medication and using illicit drugs is the likely trigger for a troubled man who knifed his neighbour.
He was seen to be smiling after the sudden and horrifying unprovoked attack.
Ipswich District Court heard it was the third time disability pensioner Bradley James Patch had stabbed someone.
Patch, 43, pleaded guilty to wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm at Dulacca on December 29, 2016; and wilful damage to a car. He was convicted of committing a malicious act with intent.
Crown Prosecutor Cameron Wilkins said Patch was holding a knife and waiting for the male neighbour after he first sent the man a text threatening to kill him. The victim did not provoke Patch in any way. He suffered a stab wound to his chest.
Mr Wilkins spoke about Patch's previous convictions .
Patch was sentenced in 1995 at Maroochydore District Court after he stabbed a man who had first assaulted him.
In 2009 he was sentenced to five years in jail by Bundaberg District Court when convicted of stabbing his brother multiple times at a family gathering.
"The sentencing judge said he stood over him (brother) smiling, and that it was a savage and severe attack," Mr Wilkins said.
Mr Wilkins said it was after the first stabbing that Patch was diagnosed with schizophrenia and drug dependency.
In the case before the court, Mr Wilkins said the victim suffered a chest stab wound under his nipple.
A small laceration above that was from one of the slashes Patch also made with the knife.
The Crown case was that the two men lived in demountable houses beside each other in the small Dulacca township, 100km from Roma.
"He threatened (via phone) to put a blade in the man and kill him and his family," Mr Wilkins said.
"At the time he (victim) was being driven around by his brother.
"He was dropped off at home and saw Patch standing on a balcony holding a knife.
"He walked up the stairs and Patch ran towards him, launched himself at him and stabbed him in the chest.
"He pulled the knife out and continued to slash with it, seven or eight times, saying 'I'll f---en kill you'..."
Mr Wilkins said the victim saw the knife was covered in blood when Patch "gestured toward the man's stomach and grinned".
The victim looked down and saw blood on his shirt.
The victim's brother drove him away from the scene. When he looked in the rear-view mirror Patch was seen standing, smiling, and still holding the knife.
The man received a 1.5cm stab wound, a laceration above the wound, and a neck laceration.
Mr Wilkins said the injured man was treated at Roma hospital and had lost one litre of blood.
He was stabilised, flown to a Brisbane hospital and discharged four days later.
Before the knife attack Patch wilfully damaged the man's car by carving the word "junkie" into the bonnet and slashed all four tyres.
Mr Wilkins said the knife had a 12cm serrated blade.
"He lunged at him. Stabbed him in a vulnerable area on the left side of his chest," he said.
"He continued to stab at his neck and chest seven or eight times yelling he was going to kill him.
"He was grinning at the victim, apparently in the joy he received looking at the injuries.
"This was similar to stabbing his brother, when (in evidence) he was standing over him grinning."
Mr Wilkins said the offence, a gratuitous violent attack on a man with no provocation, warranted the serious offender declaration to be made.
Defence barrister Jessica Goldie said Patch dropped out of school in Brisbane and by age 18 was using meth and heroin.
He had at the time of the latest offence used steroids.
In Ms Goldie's discussion with Judge Alexander Horneman-Wren SC, the court heard that Patch's mental illness was exacerbated when he used drugs and had taken himself off prescribed medication.
Judge Horneman-Wren expressed concern that such an order would mean Patch would not get the necessary ongoing strict supervision and monitoring he would need on his release.
He sentenced Patch to eight years in jail with a parole eligibility date of December 29 next year. Patch has already spent one year and 11 months in jail.
The judge did not make a Serious Violent Offender Declaration. This will mean that when, or if, Patch is granted parole by the parole review board he will receive the required ongoing support in the community.