Jailed: Screwdriver stabber who left victim for dead after brutal tool attack

Gary Brennan
Gary Brennan

AN attacker who left a man for dead after stabbing him with a screwdriver in the street has been jailed for almost a decade.

Gary Brennan, 30, left Kevin Scollen unconscious in a pool of blood with wounds to his head from a mole grip work tool, and five stab wounds to his body from the screwdriver.

It was only by good fortune you didn’t kill him. It was by luck rather than any design of yours

Newcastle Crown Court heard Brennan had found out the day before that his girlfriend had previously been involved with Mr Scollen, who is aged 52 and from Sunderland.

When he saw Mr Scollen walking along Reginald Street, in Boldon, on his way to visit a friend on August 2, Brennan “saw red” and pounced.

Mr Scollen was airlifted to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary after the attack and was told by staff he had been “very lucky” to survive the violence inflicted on him that day.

The court heard Brennan, who thought he may have killed his vicim, told police after his arrest that the attack was “one down from murder”.

Brennan, of Glaisdale Court, Simonside, South Shields, admitted wounding with inent and possessing offensive weapons.

Judge Robin Mairs sentenced Brennan, who has previous convictions for violence, to nine years and seven months behind bars.

The judge told him: “It was only by good fortune you didn’t kill him. It was by luck rather than any design of yours.

“You are a man who has repeatedly resorted to violence when the mood has taken you.

“I am satisfied this was a sustained, repeated assault. It may have lasted no longer than a minute, but in that minute you repeatedly stabbed him.

“This was a vicious and sustained assault.”

The court heard Brennan had been passing the scene of the assault in a transit van when he jumped out and launched the violence on his victim.

Prosecutor Michael Bunch told the court: “The first Mr Scollen became aware of the defendant’s presence was when he was struck from behind.

“He was hit to the head a number of times.

“As he turned to try and confront the attacker, his clothing was pulled over his head.

“He was then struck many more times, initially he thought he was being punched, then was able to see the male attacking him had mole grips in one hand and a screw driver in the other, and was using them to land blows on him.

“He went to the ground and the defendant ran back to the vehicle.

“Mr Scollen was able to get back to his feet, all be it bleeding heavily, and bent over.

“He collapsed to the floor where he was, fortunately, seen by someone who knew him from the local area .

“The police and ambulance were called.”

Mr Scollen was taken to hospital with cuts to his scalp and forehead along with stab wounds to his chest, body and arm.

Mr Bunch added: “At the time of the attack he feared for his life because of the amount of blood he lost.

“He was aware, because of the locations in which he had been stabbed, that his major organs were vulnerable.

“He was told on arrival at the RVI he had been very lucky.”

Vic Laffey, defending, said Brennan regrets what he did that day and had just “saw red”.