TWO residents of Wonthaggi’s Miners Rest Caravan Park were left badly injured; one with a fractured eye socket, fractured hip and a fractured left wrist, after an aggravated burglary and assault at their caravan last Friday morning.
The alleged offender, who according to police returned to the scene of the crime three times between 1.30am and 3.20am, to force his way into the van and assault the man, 38, and woman, 37, appeared at a remand hearing in the Wonthaggi Magistrates’ Court later in the day.
The 24 year old Wonthaggi man, charged with a string of serious offences in relation to the incident, was brought into court by two police, handcuffed, barefoot and in a white prison jumpsuit to apply for bail.
“It’s very humiliating,” the accused man was heard to say as he entered court.
In the absence of a duty lawyer, he had no legal representation, but Magistrate Steve Raleigh said he was prepared to take that into account when assessing the man’s application.
Called to give evidence at hearing, Detective Sergeant Andrew Spooner of the Bass Coast Crime Investigation Unit opposed bail.
“Due to the concerns of the victims about reprisals and the gravity of the attack, in that he returned three times to continue the assault, including kicking one of the victims while he was down in a defenceless position on the ground, we would say he represents an unacceptable risk,” Det Sgt Spooner said.
It was alleged in court that at least one of the victims was known to the offender and that a recent incident between them may have prompted the attack.
They allege that he arrived at the van, initially at 1.30am and requested to speak about the incident but was refused entry.
The accused entered the van, punching and kicking the occupants to the ground.
He returned later and repeated the assault. He then came back a third time and assaulted the pair again. At approximately 3.20am, when police attended the scene, they allegedly found the man loitering in the area of the assault, where he was arrested and taken to the Wonthaggi Police Station.
Neighbours had provided first aid, an ambulance was called, and due to the nature of his injuries, the male was taken to the Alfred Hospital. The woman was treated for bruising in the chest area but the nature of her injuries are otherwise unknown.
Magistrate Raleigh asked questions about where the man lived and if he could arrange alternative accommodation, away from the local area, but ultimately refused his application for bail and remanded him to appear at the Latrobe Valley Magistrates’ Court for a Committal Hearing on February 9 next year.
Mr Raleigh said the man was able to reapply for bail.