Man who landed brutal blow 'did not want a fight'
A WITNESS has told a District Court trial that Matthew Ryan, accused of serious assault causing grievous bodily harm to Daniel Wilder at a Mackay hotel, repeatedly said he did not want to fight moments before landing a single blow.
Janet Hume, who was in the Shamrock Hotel beer garden around 7pm on November 9 last year, gave evidence that Ryan had just lit a cigarette in the outside smoking area when two men went over to him and a verbal argument began.
"He didn't want to fight. He (Ryan) kept saying I don't want to fight you. I think he was saying that he was only going out to light up a durrie," Ms Hume said.
"I looked over and saw an arm coming to hit the other man (Ryan). He (Mr Wilder) just missed and the other fellow (Ryan) struck. The big fellow (Mr Wilder) just fell to the ground, flat on his back."
Prosecutor for the Crown Jane Shaw said that as a result of the blow to his head Mr Wilder, 28, fell backwards and his head struck the concrete floor, making the sound of a loud crack.
"It caused a serious injury, a brain injury (blood clot) if left untreated by surgery, that would endanger his life," she said.
Ms Shaw said that before the assault Ryan had gone over to a group of men seated at a table inside the hotel, some of whom he knew when employed at Hastings Deering Caterpillar in Mackay, and allegedly made "disparaging" comments about working at the company before walking away.
Witness Hayden Waters, co-worker and friend of Mr Wilder, said his friend was annoyed by comments made by Ryan.
"Dan looked a little bit annoyed. He thought he was talking down to us," he said.
He later heard Ryan say to his friend at the bar that he "mistook" what he said.
Mr Waters said when Wilder returned to the table he said Ryan was "a pussy" because he did not want to fight him. He later saw his friend hit the floor after being struck by a punch.
The trial before Judge Michael Rackemann continues today.