‘I’m f.....’: 32yo dad convicted of brutal pub assaults
A 32-year-old Gympie father on trial for viciously punching two men in a Mary Street pub was found guilty in Gympie District Court on Friday following a four-day trial.
The jury took about a day to deliver its verdict on charges against Kenneth James Hampton of grievous bodily harm and assault occasioning bodily harm.
The jury retired on Thursday morning to consider its verdict and did not reach a decision until Friday afternoon.
When Hampton was led back into the courtroom on Friday afternoon he appeared angry and said to a young woman sitting in the public gallery, "I'm f.....".
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Earlier in the trial, the court heard from multiple witnesses who gave their recollection of the events leading up to a broken jaw for one man and brain injuries for another.
The court was told that about 11pm on September 21, 2019, a group of friends were socialising at the Queenslander Hotel when one man was involved in a confrontation and was knocked unconscious by Hampton.
One of the victim's friends, Jacob Day, then punched Hampton several times trying to "restrain" him.
After the scuffle ended and 2-3 minutes passed, Hampton came up behind Mr Day and king hit him, breaking his jaw in two places.
Mr Day required surgery involving several plates and screws to realign his jaw which had been split in half.
Once the jury had delivered its guilty verdict, more charges were put before the court that had been committed while Hampton was on bail for the matters on trial.
These included two counts of breaking and entering premises and stealing, one count of attempting to escape lawful custody, one count of serious assault occasioning bodily harm and two counts of serious assault.
Hampton pleaded guilty to these offences, whereby he broke into a pharmacy using a pot plant to smash the door and stole prescription medication.
Hampton, who has a 16-year-old daughter, also broke into a cafe and stole money from the cash register.
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Hampton was further charged with attempting to escape from custody and during the struggle, he used his handcuffs to strike a police officer in the side of the head several times, causing small lacerations.
He then grabbed the taser from another police officer's belt and tried to remove it, the court heard.
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Throughout the course of the incident, Hampton assaulted a total of three police officers.
The court heard Hampton had been using marijuana since the age of 13, had struggled with an ice addiction his whole life and had engaged in self-harm.
With an extensive criminal history, Hampton had served multiple years in jail for property related offences, drug offences and assaults.
He is expected to be sentenced next week and will remain in custody until then.