Vic man in jail over bottle murder
The savage murder of a 21-year-old with a broken beer bottle has put a violent Melbourne man behind bars.
Fatah Issa had been released from a police station, after being arrested for attacking two men, just 24 hours before attacking Shaun Wright and leaving him to die.
He was also serving a community corrections order at the time for making a threat to kill and assault with a weapon.
Issa, an immigrant from war-torn Somalia, will spend at least 14 years in jail for murdering Mr Wright on a street in Fitzroy in March 2013.
Mr Wright, 21, had been out celebrating a friend’s birthday in the hours before his death.
The attack happened after Issa joined a group of strangers who were chasing Mr Wright because he had inexplicably thrown a piece of wood at a parked car, the Victorian Supreme Court heard.
Mr Wright was being assaulted by the group when an intoxicated Issa ran and launched at Mr Wright’s neck and torso with the broken bottle.
The young man collapsed to the ground and died, Justice Christopher Beale said.
“His family have been devastated by his violent, premature death,” he said on Friday when sentencing Issa to 18 years in prison with a minimum non-parole period of 14 years.
Issa was born in Somalia, shortly before the country was plunged into a chaotic and violent civil war.
He and some siblings were captured by militia and members of his family were killed, the court heard.
“You witnessed many horrific scenes of violence during your time as a captive,” Justice Beale told Issa.
Issa moved to Australia when he was seven and began abusing alcohol and drugs as a teenager, his use intensifying in the weeks leading up to Mr Wright’s murder.
He suffered severe Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Issa had no real memory of killing Mr Wright, but recalled hearing girls screaming and thought they were being chased, the court heard.
Justice Beale said there was no basis for an explanation that Issa mistakenly believed he was defending the women involved in the pursuit of Mr Wright.
“Mr Wright was being chased, not vice-versa,” he said.
Issa was released from Fitzroy police station the morning before he killed Mr Wright, after being arrested for assaulting two other men at a McDonald’s restaurant.
He was deemed unfit for interview at the time due to his level of intoxication.
The 27-year-old, who the court heard showed limited remorse, pleaded guilty to Mr Wright’s murder in May.