21-month jail sentence for man who lunged at stranger with knife during Sheffield night out
'It's shocking to ponder the consequences of what might have happened if I hadn't moved out of the way,' the victim of a Sheffield city centre altercation has said, as the man who lunged at him with a knife was jailed for over a year.
During a hearing at Sheffield Crown Court on Monday, Judge Graham Reeds QC jailed George Eccles for 21-months, after the 32-year-old pleaded guilty to offences of threatening another with a bladed article and assaulting a police constable in the execution of their duty.
The court heard how the incident took place in the early hours of May 14 this year, after Eccles was kicked out of West Street Live in West Street, Sheffield city centre, before becoming involved in a conversation with a group of men.
In CCTV shown to the court, Eccles, of Greenhead Gardens, Chapeltown can be seen pulling a knife out of his pocket and lunging the knife at a member of the group a short time later.
"The complainant takes refuge in a convenience store, shutting the door behind him. As he comes out, the defendant is still approaching, so he goes back inside and hides behind the security of the door," said prosecutor, Stephanie Hollis.
Following the incident, Eccles' victim and his friends moved on to the Merdocs takeaway in Division Street, where Eccles sought them out and began 'remonstrating' with the group once more, explained Ms Hollis.
She added: "The complainant feared for his safety, so much so that the defendant was pushed out of the door and the door was closed."
In a victim impact statement read out in court, Eccles' victim explained how the incident had left him feeling scared.
"He says he was completely shocked, very scared and unable to sleep that night. He has no idea why the male chose to attack him, and says it's shocking to ponder the consequences of what might have happened if he hadn't moved out of the way," relayed Ms Holllis.
After receiving information concerning the incidents in West Street and Division Street, two patrolling police officers began looking for Eccles and found him on Cavendish Street.
When the officers attempted to arrest Eccles he 'violently resisted' and they had to call for the assistance of a nearby doorman. After placing Eccles in a police van, he spat in the face of one of the officers as they transported him to Shepcote Lane police station, the court heard.
The court was told how Eccles has 31 previous convictions, two of which were for offences of possessing a weapon.
Defending, Mark Brooks, told the court that should Eccles, who was 'in drink' when he committed the offences, be given a sentence of immediate custody his seven-year-old son would be deprived of time with his father.
Mr Brooks added: "He lost his job when he was detained for this offence."
Judge Reeds said he felt the only option was an immediate custodial sentence, and jailed him for 21-months for the two offences.