No self-defense

Taxi driver stabbed dog owner: 3 years in prison

12.06.2024 15:46

A Viennese cab driver who stabbed a dog owner in the back with a folding knife during an argument was sentenced to three years in prison on Wednesday, one year of which was unconditional. The starting point of the dispute was the taxi driver's belief that the dog had urinated against the bumper of his cab. The conviction for intentional grievous bodily harm is not final.

As reported, an argument between a cab driver and a man with his ten-year-old daughter and his dog in Vienna-Brigittenau escalated on January 23rd of this year. The bone of contention was the driver's suspicion that the dog might have urinated on his bumper. 

Victim: "He jumped right out of the car"
He shouted an insult at the dog's owner ("You son of a bitch!"), to which the other man responded verbally. "He immediately jumped out of the car and I heard a 'clack'", the 37-year-old told a panel of lay assessors at the Vienna Regional Criminal Court. The man tried to stab him in the head and neck with the blade open, but the victim was able to prevent this with a blocked left forearm. The taxi driver then quickly took the knife in his other hand and stabbed him sideways in the back, the witness explained.

The blade penetrated the victim's body to a depth of seven centimeters and missed the spleen by a hair's breadth. The injured man only realized at home that he had been stabbed. He called the ambulance and went to hospital for treatment.

Taxi driver pleads self-defense
The guilty verdict, three years' partial imprisonment, is not legally binding. The cab driver lodged an appeal. For him, it was a self-defense situation because the other driver was "so aggressive and angry". "He said he was going to finish me off," said the defendant. He was afraid that the dog owner would damage his car, so he got out and punched him, the 47-year-old claimed. He "just wanted to show" the opponent the knife: "I wanted him to go away." He must have hit the man during the scuffle.

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