How a friendly text message landed a man in court

A KINGAROY magistrate has decided not to punish a 31-year-old man for breaching a domestic violence order due to the contents of the text he sent his ex-partner.

The 31-year-old man faced the magistrate on Monday, November 26, charged with failing to appear, contravening direction of police, contravening a domestic violence order, possessing a point of methylamphetamine, and possessing a pipe and scales used in administering a dangerous drug.

Police prosecutor Pepe Gangemi said a domestic violence court order was made on May 25, where the defendant was prohibited from contacting his ex-partner.

"On October 4, the defendant sent a text message that said, 'Hi (aggrieved), I hope you're doing well and taking care of yourself, *smile emoji*. If you can pretty please give our daughter the biggest hugs and kisses and tell her I love and miss her more than anything in the world and I'll see her when (grandparents) get back. I can't wait to see her. Please and thank you and take care of yourself."

In relation to the drug charges, on 9am July 18, police were making enquiries at a Kingaroy residence.

"While they were there, the defendant was located with a point of methylamphetamine, a pipe and scales," he said.

"For the failure to appear, he told police he'd been working in Chinchilla with a friend and called the court house to advise he couldn't attend, but made no attempts to organise to finalise that matter."

In relation to contravening requirement by a police officer to provide identifying particulars, he told police he'd forgot.

Duty lawyer Chris Campbell said the man had separated from his partner about two years ago.

"He fell into quite severe depression as a result of the breakdown of that relationship.

"He hasn't spent a lot of time with the child, and it's only in the company of his parents, due to the domestic violence order," he said.

"He was self-medicating on drugs to try and feel good and numb the pain."

Magistrate Louisa Pink told the defendant this was his fourth time in court this year.

"You've got six previous charges convicted, and today you're before the court on five.

"It seems things have spiralled out of control, and if you don't take back control you're going to end up deep in the criminal justice system."

For failing to appear, the man was charged $200. For contravening direction, he was charged $200. For the drug charges, he was fined $500.

"If you come back before me this year on drug charges, you're not going to get fines," the magistrate said.

"Having regard to the particular circumstances and the content of the text, you're convicted and not further punished.

"That doesn't mean you don't have to comply with the order, because now you know what happens."

The convictions were recorded.

To keep up to date with all the court stories from around the region, click here.

South Burnett


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