Man cries as he is jailed for Sunshine Plaza stabbing
A man who tackled a teenager and stabbed him in the chest during a brawl at Sunshine Plaza has been jailed.
Ben Stuart Jenkins, 21, stabbed a 19-year-old man after a fight broke out between the two at the entrance to Sunshine Plaza on February 1, 2019.
The Maroochydore District Court heard Jenkins, who was also 19 at the time, and the victim knew each other and had "at one point been involved" with same girl.
When Jenkins saw the victim, he yelled abuse at him before tackling him to the ground and punching him.
The victim defended himself, grabbing Jenkins and the pair struggled for about a minute before breaking apart.
He realised he had been stabbed in the upper right side of his chest during the fight.
He was taken to Sunshine Coast University Hospital and required one stitch to close the 1cm shallow wound.
Judge Gary Long said Jenkins had carried a small knife with a 5cm blade, which he said suggested there was some degree of planning.
Witnesses to the fight identified Jenkins to Sunshine Plaza security guards and he was charged by police and released on bail.
Jenkins pleaded guilty in Maroochydore District Court in October last year to one charge of unlawful wounding.
The sentence was adjourned for Jenkins to take steps to turn his life around and prove to Judge Long that he was serious about rehabilitation.
Jenkins' defence lawyer said in the months since his last appearance, Jenkins had been to psychotherapy sessions, had stopped associating with people who were a bad influence and was following a medication regimen.
She said Jenkins was still using marijuana to self-medicate but was trying to stop and had done a "significant" amount of work to get himself on track.
Judge Long acknowledged that Jenkins' mental health difficulties had contributed to his drug use over the years, but said his continued use of marijuana was concerning and could contribute to him reoffending in the future.
Jenkins cried in the dock as he was sentenced to two years in prison with a parole eligibility after five months.
Jenkins embraced his friends and his mother, and said "I love you" before being led from the court.