Man accused of knifing neighbour’s boyfriend in the chest refused bail

A man stabbed in the chest at flats in north Belfast was allegedly behind a “ham-fisted” attempt to rob the suspected assailant, the High Court heard on Friday.

Friday, 7th May 2021, 3:54 pm
Laganside court complex in Belfast city centre.

Stephen Brady is accused of knifing his neighbour’s boyfriend in an encounter outside their Antrim Road apartments on March 11.

The 40-year-old defendant faces charges of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, possessing a blade, and two counts of assaulting police.

During a bail application prosecution counsel Iryna Kennedy said officers called to the scene discovered a kitchen knife up Brady’s sleeve.

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The alleged victim was then located with a stab wound to the chest, and taken to hospital for surgery. He remains under medical care.

In police interviews Brady denied the attack, but indicated there had been an altercation. Defence barrister Aileen Smyth said her client feels “vexed” over an alleged failure to investigate his account.

Mr Justice Larkin was told the defendant lives in the same apartment block as the partner of the injured party.

“He (Brady) said that about two days earlier this individual attended his property in a ham-fisted attempt to rob the applicant,” Ms Smyth said.

“He had a knife and the applicant disarmed him.”

Brady had no mobile phone at the time, but the other man fled when he pretended to call police with a Fire Stick TV remote control, the court heard.

He subsequently returned the knife by putting it through his neighbour’s letter box, it was claimed, only for a struggle to develop when the complainant emerged from the property.

Ms Smyth revealed that Brady has contacted the Police Ombudsman’s Office due to his grievances.

Refusing bail due to the risk of re-offending, Mr Justice Larkin said his application was “doomed to failure”.

“The offence for which he was arrested involved the hospitalisation of the injured party with a knife wound to the chest,” the judge noted.

“I needn’t dilate on how serious that is, or indeed the very fine line between the offence with which the applicant is charged and the offence regarded as the most serious in our criminal law.”