Two teenagers, one armed with a flick knife, carried out a random attack on a group of young people leaving a city centre nightclub and then gloated about it on a phone as they left the scene.

Cameron Gatherar and Stephen Manjelo, both aged 19 at the time, were considered the aggressors after some initial pushing and shoving outside the Royal Station Hotel, near to the Central Station, in Newcastle, shortly after 1am on December 30, 2022.

Philip Morley, prosecuting, told Newcastle Crown Court: “It’s not clear what triggered the confrontation, but the suggestion is that they bumped into the group and there was an exchange of words and a verbal confrontation.”

He said Manjelo asked members of the other group, friends on a work night out, if they were “starting it” and did they want to be stabbed.

The Northern Echo:

Mr Morley said pushing and then fighting broke out, with Manjelo throwing the first blow, while Gatherar was taking a flick knife from a bag he was carrying.

He used it to inflict slash injuries to the face and neck areas of three of the group of young men and women leaving the nightclub.

Mr Morley said as the incident drew to an end the pair walked away and made a phone recording, “gloating and celebrating”.

He told the court the words they recorded were along the lines of: “Guys I don’t know who we banged but he got flicked.”

He said both seemed happy with what had taken place, in what he said was considered “a joint enterprise” attack.

Both were arrested nearby and, when searched, Gatherar was found to be still in possession of the knife.

The Northern Echo:

The three victims, all in their late teens or early 20s, were treated at the scene by an off-duty nurse before paramedics arrived on scene and the two most seriously injured were taken to hospital for further treatment.

One suffered lacerations to the neck and left side of the face, which has left him still in pain suffering lingering nerve damage.

The other suffered lacerations to the scalp and neck which has left him with potentially permanent scarring.

All three of the group spoke of their anxiety they now feel when going out in public.

Gatherar, of Mowbray Street, Heaton, Newcastle, and Manjelo, of Belford Avenue, Shiremoor, North Tyneside, who are both now aged 20, each admitted two counts of unlawful wounding and one of assault causing actual bodily harm.

A further charge of possessing a knife in public was also admitted by Gatherar.

Both Brian Mark, for Gatherar, and Rachel Hedworth, for Manjelo, said their clients were of previous good character and each was said to be now remorseful, after reflecting on their actions, following 13 months in custody since the incident.

Judge Gavin Doig, said it was only “good fortune” that one of their victims was not more seriously injured or even killed.

He said it was clear that they were the aggressors against a group of strangers, returning to continue the violence, despite attempts to lead them from the scene.

Judge Doig imposed custodial sentences of 30 months, on Gatherar, and 27 months on Manjelo, but said he did not feel it necessary to make them subject to restraining orders, as the parties involved did not know each other.

Investigating officer DC Michelle Clark said: "The impact on these three, previously happy-go- lucky young men, has been catastrophic.

"One in particular, the youngest of the group who was only 18 at the time of the attack, continues to struggle with his studies and feels he can no longer go out in his hometown.

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"He continues to have flashbacks and his physical injuries have left him with significant nerve damage in his face.

“Knife crime continues to blight society and we are constantly working with other forces to concentrate our resources on removing them from society, and saving lives in the process.

"We are committed to keeping the public safe and removing deadly weapons and those who carry them from the rail network.”