A South Coast furniture removalist accused of glassing a man in the stomach during a vicious, public brawl on Australia Day has a long history of committing violent crimes, a court has heard.
Police claim Dylan Ford, 27, carried out the brutal stabbing in the driveway of the Sage Hotel in Wollongong on Sunday evening following a dispute between two parties involving the alleged theft of a mobile phone.
The victim, who police said was facing away from Ford at the time and "didn't have a hope" of defending himself, was left bleeding profusely from gaping wound to his abdomen.
He was rushed to Wollongong Hospital and underwent emergency surgery.
Ford was arrested, charged with wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and remanded in custody to face Wollongong Bail Court on Monday.
In opposing Ford's bail application, police noted he had previous criminal convictions for robbery in company, demanding money with menace and affray.
"This most recent offence was of extreme violence, conducted in public in front of a popular hotel," arresting officers wrote in documents tendered to the court.
"At the time of the offence numerous patrons, including children, were in the vicinity - this number was significantly increased due to it being Australia Day."
Registrar Peter Ritchie refused bail, despite Ford's lawyer saying his client disagreed with some of the allegations against him and would explore the possibility of pleading self defence.
Court documents said Ford and his friends were staying at the Sage Hotel when they struck up a conversation with a group of people in an adjacent apartment block, who were playing music on their balcony.
The group invited Ford over to their apartment after meeting him on the street a couple of hours later.
They drank for about 15 minutes before the remainder of Ford's mates came to the unit.
They stayed a short time but were soon asked to leave.
When they were gone, one of the women inside the unit noticed her phone was missing.
Ford allegedly said "I swear to God if one of them stole it from you I'll fight my own boys," before arming himself with knuckle dusters and a knife and walking to the front of the hotel where the men were milling.
An argument ensued and Ford allegedly turned on the female and her companions, including the victim, resulting in an all-in brawl between the two groups.
Police claim witnesses saw Ford pick up an empty Corona beer bottle from a nearby garden bed, smash it in half and stab the male victim in stomach from behind.
Police arrived moments later and Ford tried to flee but was arrested after a short foot chase.
Ford's case was adjourned until Tuesday when it is expected he'll make another bid for bail.