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Man jailed for glassing face of ex-partner's boyfriend

EIGHT months, 32 weeks, 224 days. Any way you break it down, it's a whole lot longer than most people would want to find themselves spending behind bars.

For Thomas Samuel Atua, that is exactly what awaits him, after being sentenced in Gladstone District Court on Friday morning.

The 50-year-old New Zealand native was due to face trial on Fruday, but Atua entered a plea of guilty to one count of unlawful wounding, relieving the necessity for a jury to be empanelled.

The indictment originated from an incident on June 22, 2012, when Atua glassed the face of his ex-partner's new boyfriend.

Crown Prosecutor Clare Hurley told the court the details of the attack, which took place at the Rocky Glen Hotel on the night in question, when Atua went to RGs to watch The Radiators' gig.

Ms Hurley said Atua had seen his ex and the victim at the hotel, before heated words were exchanged between the former couple.

The verbal exchange between the two escalated, with Atua finally throwing the remains of his drink in her face.

Following this, the victim then approached Atua, when Atua struck him in the face with the glass.

The victim said he immediately felt blood flow from his face following the hit.

"He felt something hit his face and knew he'd been cut straight away," Ms Hurley told the court.

Defence barrister David Murray told the court his client had been subjected to racial abuse from his former partner on the night, prior to the attack.

"She (ex) got right in his (Atua's) face and gave him the finger and repeated 'Why don't you f**k off you black c**t?' and he (Atua) just lost his temper and threw the drink on her," Murray told the court.

"He (Atua) saw the complainant moving towards him and saw the complainant raise his hands in a pugilistic pose and my client made the decision to make a pre-emptive strike."

The glassing attack made by the qualified musician left the victim with five lacerations to his face, requiring about 34 stitches to heal the wounds.

Atua was sentenced to two and a half years imprisonment, to serve eight months in jail before a parole release date which was set down for October 27, 2014 and he will remain on parole for the remainder of the sentence.

Topics:  assault, crime, gladstone district court, glassing



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