State to review bashing ‘let-offs’ after image shared around
THE acting State Attorney-General said he would review the case of a Marcoola teen who received a suspended jail sentence for a violent gang bashing.
Brett Tait's son Jack was chased down and knocked unconscious last March, and a photo of his limp body was texted to hundreds of people across the Sunshine Coast.
Mr Tait says the failure of all the perpetrators to be charged over the incident sends a conflicting message to young people about anti-violence campaigns.
A photo of Jack's assailants pulling his head by the hair, bending his back awkwardly and holding his throat has circulated widely via mobile phone messages.
"It is such a violent event," Mr Tait said.
"They're treating him not as a human being, and that's disgusting."
Only one of the assailants, Jake Edward Luckett, 18, of Marcoola, was charged.
Luckett, who admitted delivering two punches, was sentenced to six months' jail, suspended immediately for 12 months.
Mr Tait said other people seemingly were involved in the incident but had avoided charges.
They were effectively "flouting the law" by distributing the photo.
And that sent a very wrong message in the current "one-punch-can-kill" climate, he said.
"You receive that (photo), it puts fear in people, and people think they can get away with it," Mr Tait said.
"The message to teenagers around Australia is, you can't do this sort of thing, (but) the guy holding his hair and the guy holding his throat, they haven't been penalised one bit.
"As you can see by the photo, it is violent and disgusting that only one was charged and given such a light sentence.
"Everyone who sees the photo is shocked at the image."
When contacted late last night, acting Attorney-General David Crisafulli said he would review the case.
Inspector Jason Overland, of the Central Patrol Group Sunshine Coast District, said: "Whenever the service has sufficient evidence to prosecute for an offence like this, it will.
"In this case, sufficient evidence was found to prosecute one offender and that offender was dealt with by the courts for his role in this matter.
"Although the service submits during the sentencing process, any sentence is the prerogative of the court who take into account all relevant matters including submissions from the defence."