Sister left with stitches, fracture in sibling spat

FIRST he blew smoke then he punched his sister, the whack causing an injury that required stitches.

The spat between two siblings landed her younger brother in court and with a suspended jail sentence for the assault.

When his sister tapped his hand Joshua Nguyen blew smoke from his cigarette into her face.

She swore, saying 'what the f**ck' and he punched her twice in her face then grappled her in a headlock.

They weren't children but adults - he is 22, his sister 24 - and her facial injury required three stitches, Ipswich Magistrates Court heard.

Nguyen blamed his sister for starting it but admitted what he did was excessive.

Joshua Jay Nguyen pleaded guilty to assaults causing bodily harm to his sister Natasha Nguyen - a domestic violence offence - at Camira on November 16, 2017.

Prosecutor Sergeant Tracey Laing said the incident began when his sister asked him if he had been in her room.

Nguyen stood over her and believing she was about to be hit she said, "I'll give you a reason to hit me" and tapped him on his hand.

Sgt Laing said Nguyen punched his sister, put her in a headlock and in the struggle fell onto a bed where she slipped to the floor.

She poked him in the eye and he let go.

Nguyen hit her, yelling at her to "get up, get up".

His sister could see blood and phoned for an ambulance.

She told police later that he said "you're going to call the cops you dog".

Sgt Laing said Ms Nguyen suffered an eye fracture and received three stitches.

"Normally he and his sister have a very good relationship," defence lawyer Tony Tran said.

"On the odd occasion they verbally (disagree) but never before had a physical altercation, or fight.

"She confronts him (in his room) and he says yes (that he had been in her room), what are you going to do about it?

"She threw a bottle. Hit his television. Knocked his beer bottle down.

"She pushes him away and that's when he punches her. He admits it was excessive.

"This is out of character."

Magistrate David Shepherd said it was serious as Nguyen's sister suffered a fractured cheek.

He said Nguyen had no previous offences, and the offence did seem to be out of character, also noting there had been some provocation, although this did not justify the physical assault that occurred.

Mr Shepherd said while it was not unusual for siblings to sometimes get into rough behaviour, punches to the face in what was an unlawful assault that caused a fracture beneath an eye put into serious offending.

He sentenced Nguyen to six months jail - immediately suspended for 18 months.



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