COURT HOUSE: The Bundaberg Court House. Photo: Mike Knott/NewsMail
COURT HOUSE: The Bundaberg Court House. Photo: Mike Knott/NewsMail Mike Knott

Man sentenced to nine months jail for tavern assault

VERBAL threats against a man at the Moore Park Beach Tavern descended into a physical altercation in the car park and ended in a 43-year-old man being sentenced to nine months imprisonment.

Mark Bernard Ferguson faced Bundaberg District Court on Tuesday where he pleaded guilty to one count of assault occasioning bodily harm against a 56-year-old man on June 18, 2013.

The victim received cuts and bruises to his knee, left cheek, forehead and a sprain to his lower rib while an intoxicated Ferguson was treated for a bite to his finger following the attack.

Crown prosecutor Clare Kelly told the court Ferguson and the victim were not known to each other when they got into a verbal exchange and Ferguson made expletive verbal threats against the complainant.

She said the tavern duty manager asked Ferguson to leave before he walked into the car park and towards the victim's car, threatening to "smash" it.

Ms Clare said the victim also went outside before Ferguson lunged at him.

"The defendant swung his right fist towards (the complainant) and they both fell to the ground," she said

"The defendant kicked (the complainant) in the head while they were still on the ground."

Ms Clare said police attended and spoke to the defendant who was breath tested about an hour after the altercation and returned a reading of 0.191%.

"He was clearly inebriated at the time," she said.

Ms Clare said the complainant was present in court while the sentence was handed down but did not wish to provide a victim impact statement.

In Ferguson's defence barrister Kim Bryson said her client was being treated for anxiety and depression and had not had a drink since the incident occurred almost two and a half years ago.

Judge Gary Long sentenced Ferguson to nine months imprisonment to be served in the community as an intensive correction order.

"It's fortunate for you the complainant was left with relatively minor injuries," he said.

"You told this court you now abstain from alcohol - that would be a good idea."



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