Bail denied for accused choker

BACKLOGS of trials by jury caused by coronavirus social distancing regulations was one excuse an accused domestic violence offender put forward for bail release.

Ronald Frederick Ah Sam, 56, applied for bail in Rockhampton Magistrates Court on May 14 after being charged with assault occasioning bodily harm and choking from an incident in September.

The court heard Ah Sam, who has been remanded in the Capricornia Correctional Centre, has been accused of punching his then partner in the head multiple times and choking her with his other hand at the same time.

She allegedly gasped for air after his hand released her throat, and she coughed up blood.

The allegations also included the victim raising her left arm in defence of the punches to which Mr Ah Sam allegedly responded by punching her in the left side of the body.

Defence lawyer Zoe Craven said Ah Sam had no prior violence convictions and the last conviction on his criminal record was from 1993.

She said the backlog of trials by jury from coronavirus restrictions meant Ah Sam was at risk of spending too much time in custody.

Ms Craven said Ah Sam was on bail at the time of the assault allegations for unrelated matters which will go to trial later this year in Brisbane.

Police prosecutor Jess King said police opposed bail based on the seriousness of the allegations.

“The assault occasioning bodily harm resulted in fractures to her nose and swelling to her face,” she said.

Magistrate Cameron Press said it appeared the evidence in the case was strong.

“The defendant may have been in a more mindful position if he had waited a few more months,” he said.

Bail was refused.



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