14 days in custody deemed enough for serial DVO breacher
THE 'sheer volume and persistence' to breach a domestic violence order numerous times landed an Airlie Beach man with time in police custody.
The 37 year old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, appeared via video link in Bowen Magistrates Court from within police custody on Monday, wearing a dark green tracksuit.
Police prosecutor Sergeant Emma Myors said fines had not acted as a deterrence for the man in the past and his offending had been persistent.
"He's charged, he doesn't seem to care, he continuously breaches the order," she said.
Defence lawyer Peta Vernon outlined some of the circumstances, which included the man hitting his partner with an open hand on Anzac Day.
"He was worried about his partner's state of mind and he received concerning text messages from her," Ms Vernon said.
"After they met up, there was a verbal argument and she actually, I'm instructed, swung and hit him with a closed fist in the first instance, struck him, and that is when he has retaliated with an open hand on her face and pushed her away."
On a separate occasion, Ms Vernon said the man was again concerned about his partner's mental health and when he arrived at her house she was not answering the door.
"He was looking through the screen door of the residence and his partner slammed the glass door on his head and it subsequently broke and he has used his elbow to further break the window and gain access to the residence," Ms Vernon said.
The court heard some breaches of the order related to him breaking contact restrictions, including him sleeping in a caravan at the front of the house last October when he claims he had nowhere else to go.
Ms Vernon said in January his partner invited him over to discuss the relationship when she began "verbally attacking" him, while there was another breach later that day when he went back to the residence to pick up his father's car.
When it was not parked where he left it, the man got upset and thought it had been damaged, Ms Vernon said.
The court heard the man and his partner were planning to continue their relationship.
"On the basis that he has spent 14 days in custody I would submit a period of probation should be imposed. He obviously needs some assistance with working through issues," Ms Vernon said.
The man pleaded guilty to breaching a domestic violence order five times as well as one count each of wilful damage - domestic violence offence, obstructing a police officer, possessing dangerous drugs, possessing utensils or pipes that had been used, trespass, contravening police direction and unauthorised dealing with shop goods (consuming goods) related to a tube of condensed milk.
Magistrate Ron Muirhead sentenced the man to two months' jail but as he had already served 14 days in custody, he was released on parole immediately.
The man was also given 12 months' probation, fined $350 and ordered to pay $324.17 restitution for the broken window and tube of condensed milk.
All convictions were recorded.
Mr Muirhead warned the father of one that further breaches of the order would result in serious consequences.
"Any further breach of domestic violence, you've had quite a few other breaches as well … they're less serious but they're relatively serious, you were making a nuisance of yourself, you kept going to a place where you weren't allowed to go, threatening to harm yourself etc," Mr Muirhead said.
"Any more of that behaviour with your record now will result in a prison term and I'd imagine it would be longer than two months and it probably wouldn't be paroled or suspended either.
"So you simply have to follow the order."