Daily Examiner

Jailed but he got bailed

A SOUTH Grafton man given a 15-month custodial sentence is walking the streets while authorities investigate home detention options.

Jai Rama Walker, 22, fronted Grafton Local Court on Monday where he pleaded guilty to a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

The assault occurred outside a South Grafton hotel on August 4 last year when Walker approached a man he claimed owed him money.

The victim told Walker he was mistaken, but a short time later Walker returned and after a short argument, punched his victim suddenly in the head.

The victim fell to the ground, hitting his head on a concrete step. He was taken to Grafton Base Hospital and treated for cuts and abrasions to his face and head.

Defence solicitor Kate Biffin said her client disputed some of the facts, which claimed his attack was unprovoked.

She said her client was known to the person he assaulted and this meant the attack was not unprovoked.

Magistrate Robyn Denes agreed there was some dispute, but this would have little impact on the sentence she imposed.

Ms Biffin said her client, who worked as a chef, had a young child and his partner was due to have another in January. She said Walker was distressed at the thought he may not be around when his partner gave birth.

The magistrate was more concerned with Walker's poor attitude to his responsibilities in dealing with these charges. She said he made minimal efforts to comply with court orders.

"I would have thought you would have been jumping through hoops to make sure you were there for the birth of your child," Ms Denes said.

"You failed to attend a court hearing, saying it was because of laziness.

"These are not the actions of some who really wants to stay out of jail."

The magistrate said the community was sick of the actions of young men who think because someone owes them something, they can "thump them".

"Mothers shouldn't have to worry their sons might not come home because they're in a coma in a Gold Coast Hospital," she said.

The magistrate sentenced Walker to 15 months' jail with six months non-parole.

She bailed him to November 3 while he was assessed for home detention.



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