Fighter narrowly escapes prison
WAYDE Thorne Goltz is usually praised for his fighting abilities, but last week they landed him in court.
The 21-year-old escaped a jail term on Friday after facing charges for breaking his girlfriend’s brother’s jaw.
He pleaded guilty to a charge of grievous bodily harm in the Rockhampton District Court.
Goltz was 18 on February 13, 2009, when he and Thomas Lawton, then 17, were at a barbecue at the Police Citizens Youth Club in Rockhampton.
The two were playfully sparring when Goltz may have slapped Mr Lawton a little harder than he intended.
Mr Lawton stepped back before picking up a full beer can and lobbing it at Goltz, a former champion Rockhampton boxer.
Goltz then started punching Mr Lawton about the head before his final blow landed on the teenager’s jaw.
Mr Lawton was taken to the Rockhampton Hospital by friends, where he was told his jaw was broken in two places.
He was later airlifted to the Royal Brisbane Hospital where he received surgery to place two metal plates and eight screws in his jaw.
A victim impact statement submitted to the courts said Mr Lawton was in extensive agony for two to three weeks afterwards, had to have his wisdom teeth removed and had lost weight.
Crown Prosecutor Joshua Phillips said it was believed the fight may have been driven by Goltz’ relationship with Mr Lawton’s sister, which is still ongoing.
He said police documentation indicated Goltz co-operated with police and appeared to be generally remorseful for his actions.
Mr Phillips said Goltz admitted the incident to police and said he was sorry for his actions and at no time wanted to cause any injury.
Defence barrister Ross LoMonaco said some awkwardness had resulted between Goltz and the Lawton family after the incident, particularly with Mr Lawton’s mother.
He said Goltz’s partner, Melanie Lawton, supported him.
Judge Michael Shanahan sentenced Goltz to 15 months imprisonment to be wholly suspended but warned him if he was involved in another instance of violence in that time he would probably be going to jail.