Drunken New Year's event ends with bayonet ’gut shot’
A MAN who stabbed his ex-partner's new boyfriend in the gut with a bayonet after a drunken New Year's Eve spat in Humpty Doo could walk from court after spending one day in jail.
Martin Ludwig Schrimpf, 61, pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court to unlawfully causing serious harm after stabbing 47-year-old Salvatore "Sam" Anthony Spizzica in the early hours of January 1 this year.
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The court heard the two men and Spizzica's girlfriend, known as Possum, were celebrating the new year when the group returned to Schrimpf's property some time after midnight.
Crown prosecutor Steve Ledek said Spizzica wanted to set off Schrimpf's fireworks and became "agitated" when the older man refused and an argument ensued.
"Due to a combination of jealousy, a reaction to some perceived unsavoury comments (Schrimpf) made about (Possum) and his refusal to allow him to set off fireworks, (Spizzica) has become angry with (Schrimpf) and yelled and swore at him, calling him a mongrel dog," he said.
Mr Ledek said a physical altercation followed in which Spizzica knocked Schrimpf to the ground and continued to verbally abuse him before going outside.
Soon after, Schrimpf heard loud bangs coming from outside and suspected Spizzica was letting off fireworks against his wishes and went outside to confront him, only to find the younger man had in fact armed himself with a rifle and was firing it into the air.
Schrimpf "snapped" at Spizzica and told him to put the gun away after having previously told him to get rid of it as he was unlicensed and went inside where he armed himself with his father's 40cm World War II bayonet.
Without realising Spizzica had now put down the gun, Schrimpf came back outside and stabbed him twice before going back inside to watch TV.
Spizzica ended up in intensive care at Royal Darwin Hospital where he underwent surgery for his injuries and Schrimpf told attending police he "knew I was in the wrong".
"I walked out, gave him a couple of jabs and he said 'You dog, you just stabbed me'," he said.
"I went back inside and sat on the lounge and watched TV."
In arguing for Schrimpf to be released on a suspended sentence, his lawyer, Shane McMaster said his client had been provoked by Spizzica, who was the aggressor on the night "on every occasion bar from the ultimate stabbing".
"Quite rightly, Mr Schrimpf verbally confronts him about (firing the gun) as well and at that point (Spizzica) threatens to 'put him in a hole'," he said.
"The only inference there is that he's going to use the weapon to do that."
Spizzica pleaded guilty in the Darwin Local Court last week to a string of weapons offences relating to the incident and copped $900 in fines while Schrimpf returns to court for sentencing on Wednesday.
*For 24-hour domestic violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.
Originally published as Drunken New Years spat ends with bayonet 'gut shot'