News

Strangling at the bottleshop

A MAN on parole for violent armed robbery throttled a woman outside an Ipswich bottle shop.

Craig Eric Whitfield, 34, knew the victim and confronted her when he left the BWS at St Ives Shopping Centre in Goodna.

Whitfield grabbed the woman around the throat and said, "I'm going to kill you".

A witness intervened, police were called and Whitfield ran from the scene.

Two days later, on January 13, he was charged with common assault and sent back to prison to serve the rest of his sentence for assault causing bodily harm and armed robbery with personal violence.

Five months later he was released and pleaded guilty to common assault in Ipswich Magistrates Court on Wednesday.

Magistrate Michael Quinn said the community had "quite frankly" had enough of this sort of violence.

"People are afraid to walk down to the shops should they be attacked," Mr Quinn said.

Defence lawyer Vincent Knox said his client and the victim had been embroiled in an ongoing family feud which led to the altercation.

Mr Knox said the incident was "aggressive posturing".

Mr Quinn said if someone with Whitfield's history came and strangled him with a threat to kill, he would fear for his life.

"Against the background of (his) history, there is no doubt the victim would have been fearful they were a person well able to carry out the threat to kill with his hands around (her) throat," he said.

Whitfield was sentenced to six months prison, wholly suspended for 18 months.

Mr Quinn said to attack someone because of a family feud was unacceptable.

Topics:  armed robbery, assault, assault occasioning bodily harm



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