VIGILANTE ATTACK: Man jailed for stabbing sleeping stranger
A court has heard how a man was stabbed in the stomach by a stranger as slept before chasing his assailant and being struck with an ironing board in a "vigilante" attack.
Joshua Adam Vohland, 35, pleaded guilty in Bundaberg District Court on Monday to one count of a malicious act with intent and enter with intent while armed.
In September last year Vohland was staying with a woman who lived across the road from the victim, who she'd had a falling out with.
On the afternoon of September 16, Vohland went across the road to the victim's home and was seen on CCTV pulling a hood over his head and putting on a glove.
Vohland went into the home and found the victim, who was asleep in his room, and stabbed him in the stomach with a knife.
The victim then removed the knife and managed to chase Vohland, who armed himself again with an ironing board, out of the house.
Vohland struck the victim across the face with it before leaving.
The victim had a deep wound to his abdomen with 500ml of internal bleeding and required surgery to stop the blood loss.
While the victim was in hospital, police launched their investigations and found a knife discarded at a neighbouring house.
Vohland was found by police at the house across the road where he admitted to the offence.
He justified his behaviour saying he was told the victim had raped someone.
Crown prosecutor Alexandra Baker told the court Vohland was "not very remorseful" for his actions at the time and described the incident as a "vigilante" attack.
Ms Baker told the court Vohland was not stranger to the courts with his appearance marking his 22nd time in the courtroom.
She said his extensive criminal history involved entries for violence and burglary.
Ms Baker said Vohland had not engaged well with parole on previous orders and resisted treatment for his mental health and drug use.
She said the maximum penalty for each offence was life in prison.
"The offences in this case involve a premeditated, to an extent, attack on a stranger within that man's home," she said.
"The complainant, in my submission, was all the more vulnerable because he was asleep and had absolutely no ability to defend himself.
"The motivation, in my submission, was concerning in that the offence was, by the defendant's own admission, motivated by retribution or revenge.
"Vigilantism will not be tolerated."
Ms Baker submitted to the court a serious violent offence declaration be made which would require Vohland to serve 80 per cent of the jail sentence imposed before being eligible for parole.
She said Vohland had been in custody for 180 days and was subject to bail at the time of the offending.
Vohland's barrister Callan Cassidy told the court his client was diagnosed with schizophrenia three years ago and recognised his mental health issues were aggravated by his drug use.
Mr Cassidy said his client was the victim of child molestation and described Vohlands response to what he was told about the victim was "emotional" with "limited" premeditation.
In his submissions, Mr Cassidy said the victim's injury was "thankfully" on the lower end of the scale.
He submitted that there were more vulnerable areas of the body than the stomach including the throat, chest and head.
Mr Cassidy said while it would be some time before Vohland is released from jail, his client did have work available to him.
Judge Vicki Loury took into account Vohland's plea of guilty and that it came at the earliest opportunity.
Judge Loury also took into account Vohland's previous response to supervision had been "unsatisfactory".
She warned Vohland that if he didn't get help with his drug use things would only get worse.
"As I'm sure you appreciate this is very serious offending," she said.
"You had no grievance against this man at all, you've taken it upon yourself to exact some sort on revenge on behalf of another without any concern at all to whether what you were told was true."
Vohland was sentenced to eight years imprisonment and will be eligible for parole in May 2023.
180 days of presentence custody was declared as time already served and a serious violent offence declaration was not made.