Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Probation thug jailed after impaling Polish cleaner on mop handle

From: Scottsman and STV
A THUG who battered a Polish cleaner and assaulted him with a 3ft mop handle has been jailed for more than nine years.
Keith Porter, who was on probation at the time of the attack, laughed as he was led in handcuffs from the dock at the High Court in Glasgow.

The court was told Porter pounced on Jaroslaw Janeczek, 39, as he sat in his car outside his Aberdeen home in July. Mr Janeczek required eight hours of surgery to remove the stick, which was fully inside his body.

A judge yesterday told Porter, 21, he had rarely heard of such "brutal violence" during his 25 years in the courts. Lord Turnbull sentenced him to nine years and four months after he pled guilty to a charge of attempted murder.

He ordered that Porter be supervised for a further five years and eight months on his release.

Co-accused George Stewart, 24, was jailed for three years and three months after he admitted assaulting Mr Janeczek to his severe injury during the same incident.

Mr Janeczek was set upon after being dropped off at his flat, in the early hours of 11 July. As he went into his car to get his house keys, Porter approached and started punching him. Porter claimed Mr Janeczek had earlier kicked his dog, and Stewart then joined in on the assault.

Stewart struck Mr Janeczek with a car door and landed several blows and kicks to his body. Jonathan Brodie, QC, prosecuting, said that shocked witnesses thought Mr Janeczek was going to be killed. Porter grabbed items including a mop and brushes from the boot of the cleaner's vehicle, the court was told.

Mr Janeczek was initially "whipped and stabbed" with the implements, before Porter carried out the assault with the mop handle. The thugs then fled, leaving Mr Janeczek for dead.

He required major surgery after doctors found the mop had penetrated his stomach and liver, narrowly missing his heart.

His chest had to be cut open and the wood had to be sawn for it to be removed. Mr Brodie told the court: "It was concluded that, without surgical intervention, he would have died."

The prosecutor told the court the wood must have been "kicked or stamped" into Mr Janeczek.

The court heard that the victim was left badly scarred and required further surgery, but fortunately he had made a "remarkable recovery".

Speaking exclusively to STV News on Thursday through an interpreter, Mr Janeczek says he remembers little of the ordeal.

He said: “There's a big black hole in my memory. I saw the faces on TV - I don't think I’ve ever seen them before.

“I'm sure they knew I was Polish. It would be easy to recognise after they exchanged a few words with me, but I don't know, that could be the reason they attacked me but there could be a number of reasons.

“It’s difficult for any reaction when you're taking painkillers and medicines, the biggest question for me was, will I be able to live normally? Will I be able to function normally and live a normal life?

“I'm sure it will affect the comfort of my life, as I get older, after so many operations, I will be in pain all the time.”

It emerged that Porter was sentenced to probation two days before this attack for a separate assault.

Lord Turnbull told Porter that he had to be locked up for the foreseeable future to stop him harming others. He said: "Shocking acts of violence are regularly described in these courts. However, in more than 25 years' experience, I have rarely heard of an assault so brutal in its description.

"Very few people would contemplate that someone aged 21 could be capable of inflicting such violence."

The judge added: "The picture that emerges of you is thoroughly an alarming one. You have been receiving detention since the age of 16.

"You complained to the social workers that the courts have never given you a chance – but that is simply not true."

Lord Turnbull told Stewart that, while his role in the attack was less, he had still acted in a "disgraceful fashion".

The judge also paid tribute to the "dedication" of hospital staff who had saved Mr Janeczek's life.