A KNIFEMAN who chopped off half of his neighbour’s ear for tampering with his food in their communal kitchen has been jailed.
Steven Brown turned down the shared oven when he realised something was burning.
When Gareth Chip, 31, realised the temperature had been adjusted, he threatened to stab Mr Brown before slicing off a large chunk of his left ear.
Newcastle Crown Court heard the wound left blood “streaming down like a tap”. Medics were able to re-attach the severed flesh back on to Mr Brown’s ear.
At Newcastle Crown Court, Chip, of Coleridge Road, Hylton Castle, Sunderland, was jailed for six years for the attack after being found guilty of wounding with intent after a trial.
Judge Simon Hickey told him: “You brought a knife to the scene and cut off a person’s ear, or part of it.
“Fortunately, he had his ear sewed back on with 13 stitches.
“He was simply cooking in his kitchen, in an area shared by you and you took umbrage.”
At the time of the attack Chip was on bail for punching a vulnerable man and stealing his rucksack in what the judge described as a “mean” offence.
Chip was given a further ten months behind bars for theft and common assault, which he admitted.
Prosecutor Michael Hodson told the court: “The defendant followed Mr Brown with a kitchen knife and made a threat he was going to ‘stick this into you’.
“He was cross about the temperature being turned down on the oven. He swung a knife at his head and cut his ear.
“He cut off part of the ear. It was stitched back on.
“The defendant said ‘I will take the rest of your ear off and I will stab you’.
“Luckily, he didn’t.”
The court heard during the trial the men had lived in next-door flats at The Elms West, in Sunderland, when the ear-slicing happened, last September, and had a shared kitchen.