Night out turns sour when fight leads to shattered jaw
HE had stopped with his mates at the kebab shop in East St after a night of drinking when a former classmate provoked him and he ended up in court facing a grievous bodily harm charge.
Lachlan Matthew Wilson, 21, pleaded guilty in Rockhampton District Court last week to the charge which arose from an incident in the Rockhampton Safe Night Precinct on February 9, 2019.
Crown prosecutor Tiffany Lawrence said Wilson's group had left the Ginger Mule when it closed about 2am and went to the kebab shop.
She said while Wilson and his female friend were waiting in line, the assault victim approached them and commented to Wilson's female friend "don't go home with that f---head".
Ms Lawrence said an argument erupted between the two and the defendant walked outside with his friends, leading the way.
"The complainant followed him out of the shop and got into his personal space," she said.
Ms Lawrence said the argument continued.
"During the argument, the complainant spat in the defendant's face," she said.
Ms Lawrence said Wilson retaliated by punching the victim in the face with the first one missing and the second one fracturing the victim's jaw in two places.
She said the victim sought help from police and was taken to Rockhampton Hospital.
Ms Lawrence said the victim's jaw no longer aligned and he underwent surgery in February where permanent plates and screws were put in.
She said Wilson made admissions to police and said he estimated the time between the spit and the punches was about eight seconds.
Wilson had no criminal history.
Defence barrister Ross Lo Monaco said Wilson was supported in court by his employer, mother, stepfather, girlfriend and a friend.
He said the electrical apprentice was seriously injured when attacked by a pitbull terrier when he was six-years-old and may have some psychological issues stemming from that incident which contributed to his reaction on February 9.
"He was verbally provoked by the complainant calling him names while speaking with female companion Wilson was with," Mr Lo Monaco said.
"Initially, he thought this guy was joking.
"They knew each other. They had gone to school together."
Mr Lo Monaco said Wilson asked the complainant what was going on after the first comment, and said "are you serious mate?" before walking away.
He said clearly there was no premeditation in this case as the punch was only thrown after the complainant followed Wilson outside, got in his face and spat at him.
The court heard self-defence is not a legal defence for a grievous bodily harm charge.
Mr Lo Monaco talked about Wilson's background which included playing hockey for Wanderers, and representing Rockhampton in the Queensland under 18 state championships in 2015 and representing Queensland in the under-18 indoor hockey team, the Queensland under-19 schools side and the Queensland under 18s mens team in 2016.
He was ordered to complete 240 hours community service and pay $5000 restitution.
No conviction was recorded.