A man accused of attempting to murder a co-worker by allegedly stabbing her at a popular Mayfield cafe has told a court through his lawyer that he regrets the incident.
Adrian Stratton, 24, faced Newcastle Local Court for the first time on Thursday morning after being charged with attempted murder and wounding a person with intent to cause grievous bodily harm on Wednesday night.
Mr Stratton, of Sandgate, allegedly assaulted a 27-year-old Swansea woman with a frying pan before he allegedly stabbed her in the chest in the kitchen of Onyx Espresso Bar about 2.30pm on Wednesday.
Mr Stratton and the woman both worked at the Maitland Road coffee house - the woman is a chef.
Police said she still had the blade embedded in her chest when she was taken to hospital.
She underwent surgery and was in a critical condition in John Hunter Hospital on Wednesday night.
A Hunter New England Health spokesperson said on Thursday afternoon the woman was in a serious but stable condition.
Mr Stratton was arrested in a street near the cafe soon after police arrived at the scene.
He was held in custody by police overnight until his first court appearance in relation to the charges.
Despite not applying for bail in court on Thursday morning, Mr Stratton asked to be brought up to the dock from the cells so he could be in the courtroom during the brief mention of the matter.
His solicitor Mark Ramsland told the court that his client had asked him to say "he wishes to express his regret and sadness for the incident".
Magistrate Janine Lacy ordered a psychiatric assessment be conducted on Mr Stratton.
She adjourned the matter to July 8.
Meanwhile, Onyx Espresso Bar is closed until further notice.
In a social media post on Wednesday night, cafe owner Leya Aboltins said that her staff members were "completely shaken up and are struggling to come to terms with what happened".
"Please keep my chef ... in your thoughts and prayers tonight as she is recovering in ICU," Ms Aboltins wrote.
"Myself, my staff and most of all [the alleged victim] will take a long time to heal from the events of today.
"Please bear with us while we find our feet and make sense of it all."
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