A man has been imprisoned over a
A man has been imprisoned over a "one man crime spree” which included assaults on police and his niece. kaspiic

Man punched his niece in the face, threatened to burn home

A COURT has heard of the "one man crime spree" caused by a man who assaulted police and his niece, and failed to front court for almost five years.

The 38-year-old man from Southport, Queensland, appeared in the dock of Lismore Local Court on Wednesday after being extradited from Queensland.

The court heard he'd gained a significant criminal history in Queensland since his 2014 offending on the Northern Rivers.

Of two police assault incidents - which were before the court among three other matters - the court heard one related to an incident where the 38-year-old, days after a suicide attempt, was being removed from a packed hospital which could no longer house him.

His solicitor, Tenika Vakauta, told the court of her client's "serious mental health issues" and said he was earlier this year the victim of a mugging involving a metal pole.

She acknowledged the police assaults were "very serious", including one incident in which he bit an officer's arm.

Other offences included a serious domestic violent incident, having goods in custody suspected stolen, larceny and failing to appear.

Ms Vakauta said her client's offending behaviour "reflected someone who desperately needed help and assistance and never got it."

Magistrate David Heilpern said some people who fled the jurisdiction after offending turned over a new leaf.

"That's not the case here," he said.

"He hasn't kept out of trouble since he's been back in Queensland."

He agreed some of the man's offending was "in the immediate aftermath (of) a suicide attempt".

But he said an October 2014 incident in which the man's sister took him in, on strict drug abstinence conditions, before he violently assaulted his niece and threatened to kill the family, was "extremely serious".

"(Those matters) are a classic example of under-charging in domestic violence matters," Mr Heilpern said.

The court heard the man punched his niece to the face and shoulder and said: "I'm going to come back and burn your house down".

When police caught up with him, he had the valuables of his sister and her children in his possession.

As the man - who'd pleaded guilty - lives in Queensland, he could not be sentenced to an intensive corrections order or any term of supervision, Mr Heilpern said.

He sentenced the man to 6 months' prison without parole.


  • NSW Domestic Violence Line: 1800 656 463
  • 1800RESPECT national hotline: 1800 656 463


  • DVConnect Womensline: 1800 811 811
  • DVConnect Mensline: 1800 600 636
  • 1800RESPECT national hotline: 1800 656 463