Father stabbed man in stomach at hotel during lunch rush
A PUB fight ended with a man being rushed to hospital for lifesaving surgery after he was stabbed in the stomach at a Maryborough hotel.
Joseph Robert William Ward attacked a man in broad daylight during the lunch time rush, using a knife he had concealed in his pocket.
The violent altercation, which was captured on CCTV, happened at the Old Sydney Hotel on November 2 last year. Ward, 26, has been sentenced to four years and nine months in jail for the incident.
This is after he pleaded guilty in Maryborough District Court to grievous bodily harm.
The court heard that prior to the bloody wounding, Ward and the victim had been in a physical fight.
During this fight, Ward himself had been hit multiple times and at one point, was momentarily knocked unconscious.
It was after the pair had been broken apart by onlookers that Ward revealed his hidden knife and used it.
The blade pierced through the victim's abdomen and into his liver.
Ward walked away from the scene as paramedics arrived and worked to keep the man alive.
He was arrested about a month after the pub fight while visiting a different Maryborough venue.
Defence barrister Paul Rutledge told the court Ward's time in prison was tough because he was being targeted by other prisoners wanting revenge.
The father of two was previously convicted for bashing an inmate over a cigarette.
The court heard about his bleak upbringing and of difficulties in his personal life.
He left school in Year 7, had lost both of his parents, and battled a drug problem.
Judge David Reid said Ward's sad story both evoked sympathy and raised concerns he would re-offend.
He questioned why Ward would have a knife on him in the first place, suggesting the attack had been in some way "premeditated".
"You've got to leave weapons alone," Judge Reid said.
"He might have died, you could have been charged with murder."
The Maryborough man will be eligible for parole on June 3 next year.