New Zealander nearly killed by 'coward' during Melbourne stabbing attack

New Zealand man Steen Locke survived multiple stab wounds that punctured his lung and vertebrae. Photo / Jake Nowakowski, News Corp Australia
New Zealand man Steen Locke survived multiple stab wounds that punctured his lung and vertebrae. Photo / Jake Nowakowski, News Corp Australia

A New Zealand man who almost died after he was stabbed multiple times in Melbourne says his attacker's cowardly lies about what happened have "rubbed salt into his wounds".

Dwayne Michael Byrne was found guilty in June of attempting to murder former Rotorua man Steen Locke during a random attack at St Kilda pier in February 2015.

"The fact that this coward lied has rubbed salt into the wounds," Locke told a Victorian Supreme Court pre-sentence hearing on Thursday.

Having survived multiple stab wounds that punctured his lung and vertebrae, Locke said he was re-traumatised by the trial.

"You sat there staring me down, smirking at me and my family and showed no sign of guilt," he said.

"I'll never understand why you put myself and my family through what you did."

Locke, then 24, was sitting with a friend at a St Kilda jetty on February 7, 2015 when Byrne stabbed him.

"I'm a big guy but as I was bleeding on the footpath, I have never felt so vulnerable or small," said Mr Locke.

Prosecutor Jeremy McWilliams said Mr Locke had his back to Byrne when the smaller man attacked him.

The pair did not know each other.

Steen Locke says his attacker made him feel vulnerable and small. Photo / Jake Nowakowski, News Corp Australia
Steen Locke says his attacker made him feel vulnerable and small. Photo / Jake Nowakowski, News Corp Australia

"He was doing no more than sitting in a public place, minding his own business," said McWilliams.

"This was offending which was both brutal and senseless in equal measure."

Defence counsel said Byrne had poor impulse control as a result of his difficult past and history of substance abuse by the time the then 22-year-old attacked Locke.

The prosecution says there was a degree of planning that night because Byrne had armed himself with a knife before leaving home.

"It was an unprovoked, gratuitous attack upon a man who was unarmed," said McWilliams.

"There is no possible justification for what was done to Mr Locke that night."

Byrne will be sentenced at a later date.

- AAP

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