Former Big Brother contestant Sam Wallace was supporting a mate when he encountered an armed man whose tendencies towards violence were inflamed by jealousy.
Mr Wallace was shot through the thighs when his decency got him caught up in a case of mistaken identity, and he would have been murdered if not for a misfiring gun.
His assailant, Gold Coast man Anthony Yoon Sun Soong, received a 13-year jail sentence in the Brisbane Supreme Court on Wednesday for the attack.
The court heard Soong, 26, had an extensive history of violent crime when his tumultuous relationship with a woman broke down in 2015.
Soon after, she began seeing another man: Mr Wallace’s housemate Joshua Milani.
After hearing the new couple had spent a night together, Soong saw red.
He peppered her with abusive calls and messages and tried to assault her, before threatening Mr Milani on social media.
Mr Milani and Soong agreed to meet at a restaurant at Merrimac to talk out their differences.
Mr Wallace insisted he accompany Mr Milani.
At the restaurant’s car park, Soong fired four shots into their vehicle, with one bullet penetrating Mr Wallace’s thighs.
He then held the gun to Mr Wallace’s head and pulled the trigger.
Mr Wallace heard a “click”; his life saved by the gun jamming.
Soong then repeatedly pistol whipped him.
“You’ve got the wrong guy,” Mr Wallace told him.
Soong replied: “I don’t care. Go to the police and I’ll kill you.”
Soong was found guilty of attempting to murder Mr Wallace after trial earlier this year, where he argued he intended only to scare Mr Wallace.
Justice Martin Burns said it was a planned and unprovoked attack on defenceless men.
“This was not a spontaneous act,” Justice Burns said on Wednesday .
“It was carried out with great deliberation and as though you were a law unto yourself.”
The court heard it was not the first time Soong had attacked innocent people.
In 2010, he repeatedly punched in the head a 51-year-old man who attempted to calm him when he was fighting with his girlfriend in public.
He has also been convicted over his involvement in a violent robbery, as well as a brawl.
His prospects of rehabilitation were “bleak”, Justice Burns said.
Having served three-and-a-half years in custody, Soong will be eligible for parole in 2026.