Only about a week before the expected birth of his child, Gary Thomas Dufty has begun a three-year jail term for a stabbing that put a workmate in hospital with a perforated bowel.
Dufty’s parents were in tears as they sat through his Christchurch District Court sentencing and heard that the stabbing was seen as being too serious for anything less than a jail term.
Dufty’s partner is expecting a child on March 7 and he had not wanted her to travel to Christchurch to support him at the sentencing.
The 22-year-old was told by Judge Gary MacAskill that he must pay a $3000 emotional harm reparations payment to the victim, who said in his victim impact statement that he had lost $6000 in wages as he recovered from his painful injury.
Judge MacAskill told Dufty: “We see enough of these cases before the court to know that deterrence is required.”
The stabbing happened after a drinking session at a Phillipstown complex where workmates lived in several units. Defence counsel Geoff Fulton said that if it had not been for the alcohol involved, people would have laughed off the work-related dispute that arose.
Instead it led to a scuffle, and a fall down the stairs by Dufty and the victim. Dufty then armed himself with a knife and stabbed the victim in the abdomen causing a tear to his bowel and damage to his urinary system.
He needed surgery for the injuries, and spent about four weeks in hospital. He had much longer off work, feeling sore and tender. He still has nightmares and insomnia and had to stop taking counselling because he could not afford the time nor the cost.
Judge MacAskill asked Crown prosecutor Chris Newman to take that issue up with ACC to ensure that the victim had received all the help available.
The judge said he accepted that the attack was impulsive. He noted that Dufty had a significant criminal record with 16 previous convictions, but no convictions for violence. He was remorseful but probation assessed him as having a high risk of causing harm to others.
In this case, he had pleaded guilty to a charge of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm. Judge MacAskill told him: “You took the trouble to acquire a knife to carry out the attack. The grievous bodily harm was serious in the scale of things. You are lucky that he did not suffer a more serious wound or a fatal injury.”