Man accused of “extraordinarily stupid” assault on baby
A YOUNG Gladstone man has been granted bail after his role in allegedly ambushing and assaulting a mother, her sister and four-month-old baby in an attempt to take the child at an Allenstown business on Monday.
The 19-year-old, who cannot be named due to legal reasons, appeared in Rockhampton Magistrates Court on November 13 charged with 10 offences, including three counts of assault occasioning bodily harm while armed and in company (domestic violence offence), two counts each of assault occasioning bodily harm and stealing (domestic violence offence), and one count each of assault occasioning bodily harm while armed and in company, enter premises with intent to commit indictable offence (domestic violence offence) and stealing.
Police prosecutor Jess King said police "strongly" opposed to the defendant being granted bail as the defendant was at an "unacceptable" risk of committing further offences and failing to appear, despite his young age and lack of criminal history.
Ms King said it was alleged the defendant and two co-accused, his mother and brother, had premeditated and planned to surprise the victim to take her baby.
The court heard the other male co-accused was the father of the baby.
The offending reportedly occurred at the United Petrol station on Lower Dawson Rd about 1.15pm on November 9.
It will be alleged the defendant grabbed the victim mother by the hair and tried to drag her while she was on the ground in the carpark outside the service station.
It will be alleged the defendant then pegged a can of drink at the victim, hitting her in the head. He then followed her into the store, trying to block her off.
It will be further alleged the defendant held down the other female victim and assaulted her.
Ms King said the offending was "particularly horrifying" and the defendant, along with the co-accused, showed a complete disregard for the safety and wellbeing of the baby, which was held in the victim mother's arms during the alleged attack.
It was believed the baby was hospitalised after sustaining head and upper body injuries in the alleged attack.
"That infant was placed in an astonishing amount of risk and it is extremely fortunate catastrophic injuries did not result as a result of these offences," Ms King said.
"There was clear premeditation and it would seem these parties would go to extreme lengths to take this victim child from the victim mother."
The court heard the victims were from Gladstone.
Defence lawyer Lachlan Robertson argued his client was at risk of spending too much time in remand awaiting trial or sentence.
Mr Robertson said the risk his client posed of committing further offences and failing to appear could be managed through strict conditions.
He said his client would be willing to abide by any conditions the court would impose and deem necessary to reduce the risk of further offending.
Magistrate Philippa Beckinsale said the defendant's actions were "extraordinarily stupid" and had no regard to the safety of the victim baby.
Ms Beckinsale was satisfied the risk of the defendant committing further offences or failing to appear could be mitigated through reporting conditions, residence conditions and no contact conditions.
The defendant was granted bail with those conditions.
Briefs of evidence were ordered, and the matter was adjourned until January 13.