Axe attack in Islington leaves man in shock

POLICE: Damage to the vehicle of Justin Hall who was attacked with an axe at Islington. The weapon pierced the glass, but it did not shatter. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

POLICE: Damage to the vehicle of Justin Hall who was attacked with an axe at Islington. The weapon pierced the glass, but it did not shatter. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

JUSTIN Hall thought he was going to die when he was attacked by a man wielding an axe on a suburban street in Islington on Thursday.

“I am still in shock,” Mr Hall,30, said.

Mr Hall was in his car, about to charge his phone, when a man in the car behind allegedly started screaming at him.

Police said it was alleged the driver of the other car became annoyed that Mr Hall’s car wasn’t leaving immediately so he threw a sandwich at the vehicle and got out to abuse the driver.

After words were exchanged the man got back into his ute and reversed out of his space before stopping next to the Camry.

Police the man allegedly grabbed an axe from the rear tray of his ute smashing the drivers-side window, windscreen and roof of the Camry.

“I was just at home and walked out to my car to go to work,” Mr Hall said.

“It was so quick, he was at my window and then all of a sudden there was glass everywhere. I still had my phone in one hand and the cable in the other.

“He just exploded and I thought yeah, I am going to die.”

Mr Hall said he didn’t see the axe until the man “took a swing at the windscreen”.

“It was a full size, like one-metre in length, axe. I saw it and that’s when the axe hit me,” he said. 

“I don’t recall passing out, but I remember leaning away in defence and the axe hitting my arm, before the handle got me in the face. I absolutely thought he was going to kill me.” 

Police arrested and charged a 44-year-old man in relation to the incident. 

He was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm, armed with intent to commit indictable offence, destroy or damage property and stalk/intimidate intend fear physical harm.

He was given conditional bail and will appear in Newcastle Local Court on Thursday, August 31.

Mr Hall remembers screaming for help. Passers-by came to his aid, attempting to talk the assailant down.

To him it felt like an hour had passed, but the attack had lasted just 10 minutes before the man fled the scene. 

He suffered bruising to his arm and face.

He was taken to the Mater Hospital for treatment but was able to return home.

“There was so much blood. There is blood all through my car, it’s pretty gruesome,” he said. “I still don’t think it has hit me, I am still in shock.

“I have had my fair share of encounters with aggravated people having worked at a pub, but I have never felt like my life was in danger.

“There’s a photo I have of the car where the axe hit the middle of the window frame and that was two inches from me.

“One missed swing and it could have been murder.”

The Herald, Newcastle

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