Man jailed for 'unprovoked' assault in the Bundaberg CBD

JAILED: Christopher James Bell was jailed for assault after pleading guilty in the Bundaberg Magistrates Court on March 31, 2016. Photo Facebook
JAILED: Christopher James Bell was jailed for assault after pleading guilty in the Bundaberg Magistrates Court on March 31, 2016. Photo Facebook Facebook

A 20-YEAR-OLD Bundaberg man was on parole for armed robbery when he punched another man three times from behind in an unprovoked assault in the Bundaberg CBD.

In the early hours of February 6, Christopher James Bell and a co-accused approached a group of people in the vicinity of Targo and Woongarra Sts.

After a discussion between the two parties Bell's co-accused, who has yet to have his matters dealt with by a court, allegedly punched the victim to the face.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Dean Burgess said Bell then punched the man from behind at least three times in a "cowardly, unprovoked" assault.

Sgt Burgess said police were alerted to the incident and as they arrived saw Bell "standing over the victim throwing punches".

The victim received a bloodied nose and swelling to his face.

When police attempted to arrest Bell he ran but was was apprehended in Bourbong St.

Bell pleaded guilty to one count each of assault occasioning bodily harm in company and obstruct police in the Bundaberg Magistrates Court on Thursday.

Sgt Burgess said Bell's actions warranted a term of imprisonment and in light of his history, it was what the community would expect.

Bell's defence lawyer Rian Dwyer described his client as a "simple man" who was "easily led".

He said Bell got caught up with the wrong people, which led to his offending.

Mr Dwyer said Bell was a former drug addict who had beaten his addiction to ice and cannabis but substituted it with alcohol.

In sentencing Bell, Magistrate Aaron Simpson acknowledged there had been an interaction between Bell and the victim but nothing which called for Bell's actions.

He said the offending occurred in the Bundaberg Safe Night Precinct at 2.20am and he needed to balance the victim's injuries against the prevalence of Bell's offending.

"Luckily for you the injuries are quite minor. It was more good luck than good management," he told Bell.

Mr Simpson said it was also troubling that Bell and his co-accused set upon the victim in a two-on-one situation.

"It's easier to be tough when it's two against one," he said.

Bell was sentenced to six months jail with an immediate parole eligibility date.

Mr Simpson said Bell's time in jail would be determined by the parole board with actual jail time to be added to any portion of the activated suspended sentence for armed robbery that he may also be ordered to serve.

Topics:  bundaberg coward punch editors picks

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