Mate of man who fell off balcony jailed

 

A MAN who was tasered by police after his mate fell three storeys from a Broadbeach balcony has been jailed for attacking his former stepfather.

Jeffrey Andrew Willis, who watched his best friend Noah Fellows fight for life on December 8 last year, pleaded guilty in the Southport Magistrates Court yesterday to assault occasioning bodily harm.

The 27-year-old took the law into his own hands and assaulted his former stepfather who had sent threatening text messages to his sister, the court was told.

Jeffrey Andrew Willis outside Southport Magistrates Court in July. Picture: Lea Emery
Jeffrey Andrew Willis outside Southport Magistrates Court in July. Picture: Lea Emery


Willis went to his former stepfather's house in Robina on April 13 last year, broke a door and assaulted the man following an argument.

He punched him with such force that his stepfather was pushed through a neighbour's gate, the court was told.

The victim suffered lacerations, a whiplash and psychological damage, the court was told.

Defence barrister Marty Longhurst said the man sent Willis' a text message implying he would shoot his sister.

"A dispute over a phone escalated," Mr Longhurst said.

"He accepts his actions went too far."

The victim had been married to Willis' mother but the pair had separated, the court was told.

Jeffrey Andrew Willis. Picture: Facebook
Jeffrey Andrew Willis. Picture: Facebook

Willis also pleaded guilty to a string of charges, including entering a dwelling with intent, wilful damage and possessing dangerous drugs.

Magistrate Gary Finger said Willis should have called police regarding the threats.

"The texts certainly don't make any justification for doing what you did," Mr Finger said.

"It might explain why you're there but doesn't give you any justification.

"It's a serious assault in my view."

Willis was sentenced to 12 months in jail and will be released on parole on November 8.

He was also ordered to pay $1252.97 for the door he broke and $1000 in compensation to the victim.

Last month, Willis pleaded guilty in the Southport Magistrates Court to hindering an ambulance officer and public nuisance.

Willis was tasered while paramedics were working to save the life of Mr Fellows, who died of his injuries in May.

His treatment during the fatal balcony fall led a magistrate to criticise police in how they handled the situation.

Willis plans to open his own butcher shop.



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