Man holding knife during town centre brawl jailed for 20 months

Augustin Dumitru has been jailed for 20 months following the brawl in Norwich Road in 2019.

Augustin Dumitru has been jailed for 20 months following the brawl in Norwich Road in 2019. - Credit: Suffolk Constabulary

A man who was involved in a mass armed brawl in a busy Ipswich town centre street arising out of a dispute between two families has been jailed for 20 months. 

During the incident 38-year-old Augustin Dumitru was seen running out of a Portuguese cafe in Norwich Road with a knife and joining in the violence, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Sentencing Dumitru, Judge David Pugh said: “CCTV shows you leave a cafe after the incident started. You immediately rush to where the fighting is happening and you are seen to raise your hand above your head. 

“You are holding a knife and make a downward stabbing motion several times towards various males.

“As one of them slips you are seen to make a stabbing motion towards his back but although it appears he did suffer an injury to his back there is no direct evidence that the injury was caused by you,” said the judge.

Dumitru, of Caldwell Hall Road, Ipswich, admitted violent disorder on November 23 2019 and having a knife.

He also admitted failing to attend Ipswich Crown Court in July 2020.

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Joe Bird, prosecuting, said the incident "erupted" outside a Portuguese café in Norwich Road, Ipswich, shortly after 10.25am as a result of an ongoing dispute between the Pitigoi and Stefan families.

He played CCTV to the court which showed the brawl spill across the road in view of bystanders, including a mother and three children, who took refuge behind the counter of a dry cleaners.

Two men and two women suffered injuries including stab wounds.

Mr Bird said the violence resulted in Norwich Road being closed until 4pm causing disruption to traffic and local businesses.

He said Ipswich Town had been playing at home that day which added to the traffic problems.

The court heard that since the incident a number of people involved in the incident had been sentenced and Dumitru was the last defendant to be dealt with.

Steven Dyble for Dumitru said his client wasn’t a member of either of the families involved in the dispute and had been having a cup of coffee in a cafe when the trouble started.

He said Dumitru had taken a butter knife out of the cafe but there was no evidence he had actually injured anyone with it.

He had attended an early hearing for the case but had then gone to Romania to care for his ill mother and was arrested when he arrived at Heathrow in April.