Falmouth man Michael Garry jailed for 12 years for knife attack on student
A man with a record of knifepoint robberies has been jailed for 12 years after attacking a university student.
Michael Garry of Trevethan Road, was on licence from a nine-and-a-half year sentence imposed in 2007 for three offences when he broke into student accommodation last May.
The 32-year-old pleaded guilty to assault with intent to rob and on Monday at Truro Crown Court Judge John Neligan imposed a 12 year sentence.
Last year Garry broke in through a kitchen window of the bedsit on The Moor, picked up a chef's knife and entered one of the bedrooms.
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Here he found Jake Goldsmith asleep in bed and dived onto him.
"For a split second he thought it was a joke until Garry held the knife against his throat," said prosecutor David Evans. "Garry then demanded £500."
He allowed his victim to get out of bed and then began prodding the knife into his abdomen.
"He then grabbed him around the neck and slammed his head against a wall, and pushed the knife into the soft area of his left eye socket, demanding 'Give me your money, give me all you've got.'"
Mr Goldsmith grabbed the defendant's arm in an attempt to disarm him and as they struggled he suffered a number of cuts and wounds to his hands.
A glancing cut on his lower lip and face bled profusely and Garry thrust the knife about 5cm into the top of his right shoulder. The wound required a lengthy operation under general anaesthetic.
James Dowdell responded to Mr Goldsmith's screams and together they wrestled Garry to the ground and held him there until the police arrived and secured him with restraints.
When interviewed Garry said he had no recollection of the incident at all. He had been with a friend watching the Liverpool-Chelsea FA Cup final, drinking and taking valium tablets and had suffered a blackout, as he had on a previous occasion.
Mr Goldsmith said afterwards that he had been petrified and suffered severely emotionally and physically.
Mr Evans revealed a long history of offending included the knifepoint robberies, one of which he stole £7,000 from a female cashier.
Defence counsel Robert Linford handed in reports from a consultant forensic psychiatrist and probation officer and called Fr John Bielawski, parish priest at Falmouth and Helston, who spoke of an "astonishing change" in Garry and of his remorse.
Judge Neligan told Garry he had petrified his victim, but he accepted that it was not necessary to impose an indeterminate sentence for the protection of the public.