Pole who stabbed neighbour may face prison

A Polish man who stabbed a neighbour with a knife following a late night struggle before hiding in a cupboard to avoid detection was warned he could face a prison sentence this week.

Arkadiusz Helbecht, 28, inflicted a three centimetre laceration to his victim’s right thigh and a half centimetre wide penetrating wound to his abdomen when a fight broke out in his Lerwick bedsit last June.

The court heard there was “a history of animosity” between the two men, who both stayed at a block of bedsit flats in Lerwick’s Scottshall Court when the incident took place on 6th June.

They had already been involved in a dispute outside a local pub that evening when the victim – Marcin Olejniczak – assaulted Helbecht leaving him with an injury to his eye.

Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said another fight broke out in Helbecht’s flat later on in the night.
The accused had been preparing food, and was holding a knife in his hand when the dispute started.

He stabbed Olejniczak, who then broke free from the struggle and ran out of the building where he was almost hit by a passing taxi.

As the driver tried to help him, he saw Helbecht run out of the building with blood on his hands before banging on a neighbouring door.

The neighbour – Helbecht’s brother – let him in and he hid himself in a cupboard. Police later found him “crouched down” in the cupboard, and he was detained.

He was taken to the police station for interview, but refused to answer any questions and was abusive to the interviewing officer.

Mr MacKenzie said the laceration to the Olejniczak’s abdomen was deep enough to penetrate his abdominal wall, which “caused concern” to medical staff who were treating him. He was, however, discharged from hospital two days later with no lasting problems.

Defence agent Chris Dowle said Helbecht had been on bail since June, and was working for a scaffolding company.

He produced a letter from the employer in support of Helbecht’s reliability.

Sentence was deferred on Helbecht, now of Brentfield Place in Sandwick, until 11th February for reports, but Sheriff Graeme Napier told him he faced a possible future behind bars.

“This is a very serious crime you have admitted, and there is a possibility you will be sent to prison because of it,” he said.


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