A MAN who stabbed his neighbour in the face with a Zulu spear that he kept in an umbrella stand has been jailed for seven years and four months.

Heath O’Brien, formerly of Windham Road in Bournemouth, attacked Stephen Lovelock with the assegai in a row over money on October 30 last year.

Hours before, O’Brien, 49, had smashed a glass pane in Mr Lovelock’s door with a sledgehammer while drunk.

He later apologised and offered to clear the damage but then became agitated again, believing Mr Lovelock and friend Donna Gibbs were “making fun of him”.

He went back to the victim’s flat but discovered Mr Lovelock holding a baseball bat.

O’Brien returned to his property and picked up the spear, thrusting the blade at the victim.

It went through Mr Lovelock’s cheek and into his mouth, breaking a tooth.

The victim picked up the sledgehammer left behind by O’Brien the previous day, but was unable to swing it in the hallway and moved back into his own flat as Ms Gibbs ran and hid in the bathroom.

He closed the door to O’Brien but the defendant smashed the spear through.

Mr Lovelock grabbed it and the two grappled with the weapon, during which time O’Brien himself was seriously hurt.

When police arrived, O’Brien told them: “It’s lucky you caught me - I was going to kill him.”

Sadie Rizzo, prosecuting at Bournemouth Crown Court, said the victims were “fearful for their lives”.

“On more than one occasion, he said he was going to kill them,” she added.

Kevin Hill, mitigating, said O’Brien believed he had been provoked and there was a lack of premeditation.

The defendant, who has a history of alcohol abuse and depression and has an autistic spectrum disorder, admitted wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, two counts of threats to kill and two of criminal damage at a preliminary hearing.