Man who stabbed shop owner with hunting knife is jailed for four years
A man who stabbed a Belfast shop owner in the neck and head with a hunting knife following a drunken incident involving the victim's dog has been jailed for four years.
Raymond Allardyce (50) was initially charged with attempting to murder Denis Wolsey, who has run a tackle shop on the Upper Newtownards Road since 1984.
Belfast Crown Court heard the prolonged attack on Mr Wolsey - which included Allardyce stabbing him three times, punching him as he lay on the ground then stamping repeatedly on his face - was only stopped when police arrived.
Judge David McFarland told Allardyce, of Bannview Heights in Banbridge, he will serve four years in prison, with another four years on licence.
As a result of the attack, Mr Wolsey (65) sustained life-changing injuries.
He can no longer work more than a couple of hours in the shop, suffers partial paralysis in his left arm, walks with the aid of a stick and has had to move to a house which is more accommodating to his needs.
Crown prosecutor Rosemary Walsh said the incident occurred on June 10 last year, when Allardyce drunkenly tried to give a crisp to one of Mr Wolsey's dogs. Revealing that the men knew each other, Ms Walsh said that at around 2pm on the day in question several witnesses reporting seeing Allardyce in a drunken state.
Allardyce went into a newsagent's where he bought a packet of crisps.
He then made his way to the tackle shop, where Mr Wolsey's two dogs were tied up outside and gave one a crisp.
Allardyce then stumbled into the dog, sustaining a bite to the lip in the process.
Mr Wolsey then brought Allardyce into his shop and helped him to clean up, before he left the shop.
Around 45 minutes later a shop assistant saw Allardyce returning to the tackle store.
She said Allardyce was walking with purpose, had a determined look on his face and was carrying a large knife - which prompted her to call police.
Allardyce then entered the tackle shop and attacked Mr Wolsey from behind.
The court heard Allardyce firstly stabbed Mr Wolsey in the back of the neck, which immediately disabled him and caused him to fall to the floor.
While he was on the ground, Mr Wolsey was subjected to a prolonged attack.
Speaking after his attacker was handed an eight-year sentence, Mr Wolsey described his ordeal as "horrific".
He said: "If he had have got 15 years, it wouldn't have been long enough. He needs to be taken off the streets for a long time, especially given that he has previous convictions for violence."
He added: "I'm 65 - I'm at the age now where life should be getting easier, but since last summer life has become much more difficult for me."