Man faces five years in jail after 'surf rage'
A SURFER faces serious criminal charges when he fronts Byron Bay Local Court later this month, when police will allege he hit another surfer in the face with his board at a Broken Head beach earlier this week.
Described by police as a "surf rage" incident, at about 1.30pm on Monday, a Byron Bay man was surfing when police will allege "he and another surfer went to catch the same wave".
Police said the accused 29-year-old pushed the pointy end of his surfboard into another man's face, causing him facial injuries that bled.
The victim left the surf to contact police, who arrived shortly after to find the accused in the surf.
Upon exiting, he was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm, which in NSW carries a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment.
Tweed-Byron chief inspector Luke Arthurs said the incident was a one-off and "not common up here".
"But that type of behaviour is not acceptable.
"Police will take such matters seriously and investigate any claims.
"Be aware that if you're not happy in the surf and you assault somebody we will take action and you will have to face the courts."
The man charged with occasioning actual bodily harm and is expected to appear at Byron Bay Local Court on June 22.
Other penalties for the charge include home detention, community service, a suspended sentence, good behaviour bond, fine or a dismissal of charges, even if they're proven. It can be further complicated if there are aggravating factors.