Hamza Ali Hussain hurled the Mercedes C63 car towards a group of revellers in the early hours of New Year’s Day after his friends were involved in a dispute inside the TBC nightclub in Batley.
Joshua Adams-Mitchell was not Hussain’s intended target, but suffered injuries described as “significant and debilitating” in the smash, leaving his future in the Army in doubt.
Hussain, of Middle Road, Westtown, Dewsbury, had not been in the nightclub but became “enraged” when his friends told him about an incident during the evening, Leeds Crown Court heard.
His friends pointed out the person responsible for the altercation and he circled outside the nightclub in the car that had been rented by an acquaintance and which he was not entitled to drive, having never passed a driving test.
He then accelerated towards the group containing his intended target, but hit Mr Adams-Mitchell as he stepped backwards into the road as the car approached.
Jonathan Sharp, prosecuting, said the 22-year-old was thrown on to the windscreen, rolled over the top of the car and was then hurled 20-30 yards before landing in the road.
His injuries included facial fractures, injuries to his knee, damage to his right eye, rib and lung injuries and PTSD.
Hussain continued to accelerate as he hit Mr Adams-Mitchell and made no attempt to brake.
He immediately fled the scene and was arrested the following day.
In his victim statement, Mr Adams-Mitchell said the incident had impacted on himself and his partner, who had been suspended from her job, and said he felt worried and paranoid that “people were after him”.
Mr Sharp said: “He is currently signed off as unable to work in a military role and his future career in the Army may be dependent on his recovery from PTSD and his knee injury, which require continued treatment.”
At the time of the incident, a social media post by English Defence League founder Tommy Robinson fuelled claims Mr Adams-Mitchell had been targeted due to his military service.
But sentencing Hussain, who previously pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent, Judge Robin Mairs said there was no reason for what he did that morning.
He told Hussain: “There had been minor altercations within the club. It is unclear what the nature of those were and they were, as I stress, minor altercations.
“There’s no evidence of any dispute you had with Mr Adams-Mitchell, in particular I do not find any political motivation, on the evidence, to have struck him with your car.
“There’s no reason or justification for your actions that morning.
Hussain was jailed for eight years and disqualified from driving for nine years.
Robin Frieze, in mitigation, said Hussain was “appalled” by what he had done and had no malice towards Mr Adams-Mitchell.
Detective Inspector Mark Catney, of West Yorkshire Police, welcome Hussain’s eight year sentence.
He said: “Hussain’s actions that day were reckless and violent as he deliberately drove his car into a crowded area outside a busy nightclub on New Year’s Day.
“This incident has left a young man with serious injuries and we welcome the sentence that has been handed.”