Binge drinker attacks CQ publican, blames mum's murder

A MAN who drunkenly assaulted a publican over an unpaid drink order had been self medicating by binge drinking over childhood traumas, a Rockhampton court has heard.

These traumas included the man's father murdering his mother when he was five.

Michael Jeffrey Stannard, 46, pleaded guilty on Friday in the Rockhampton Magistrates Court to assault occasioning bodily harm while intoxicated.

Police prosecutor Jess King showed three CCTV videos to the court showing the assault on May 16 on the then 52-year-old manager Mark Hurst.

About 8.45pm, Mr Hurst served Stannard who had ordered a drink at the bar and tried paying with a debt card which was declined multiple times.

The footage showed Mr Hurst standing at the cash register when Stannard leaned over the bar and snatched the debit card from his hand before walking off.

Next, Mr Hurst left the bar area to following Stannard through the bistro area to pursue payment.

Seconds after Mr Hurst made his approach, Stannard has tackle-like assaulted Mr Hurst using one arm, pulling him along and then tumbling onto the floor with Mr Hurst hitting his head on furniture.

Mr Hurst sustained a laceration to his head and a concussion.

The incident was witnessed by children and other customers in the bistro area.

Ms King said patrons had to pull Stannard off Mr Hurst and he then left the bistro but was apprehended outside by an off-duty police officer.

"He fell asleep multiple times while being transported," she said.

Defence lawyer Lachlan Ygoa-McKeown said Stannard had a bad day at work and had been drinking at the licenced venue since knocking off.

He said his client had not been drinking for some time prior to this day.

"He had developed a habit of drinking until... he fell asleep or was unconscious," Mr Ygoa-McKeown said.

He said this developed as a result of multiple childhood traumas including growing up in a violent household until his mother left his father, taking him and his younger sister with her, and living on the streets for about a year before his father murdered his mother.

Mr Ygoa-McKeown said since this incident, Stannard had sought help via the Alcohol Tobacco and Other Drugs Services for his binge drinking and psychological treatment for his childhood trauma.

The court heard this was not the first time Stannard had been convicted for assault.

His criminal history, told to the court, stated he had been convicted of grievous bodily harm in 1995 and later convicted for breach a domestic violence order for which he received a three-month prison term. He served 20 months of a five-year prison term for unrelated charges in 2011.

Stannard offered, through his lawyer, a letter of apology to Mr Hurst and an offer to pay $1000 compensation upfront.

Magistrate Jeff Clarke urged Stannard to continue his rehabilitation work before sentencing him to a $500 fine, pay $1000 compensation and 40 hours of community service for his "unacceptable behaviour" in front of children.



JT recalls most memorable on-field moment

premium_icon JT recalls most memorable on-field moment

'To be a part of it was massive and no one can take that away'

REVEALED: Inside the courtroom before the murder trial ended

premium_icon REVEALED: Inside the courtroom before the murder trial ended

MOMENTS leading up to the abrupt end to Martinez and Barnett trial

Urgent plea to help find 'the child Australia forgot'

Urgent plea to help find 'the child Australia forgot'

Wanted man has slipped through the hands of police at least 3 times

Local Partners