Court hears sickening details of violent attack with car
A GIN GIN man who ran a woman over not once, but twice during a violent brawl between two families has been jailed for the incident that left his victim with dreadful injuries.
Tensions between Jason Paul Neilen's family and a Bundaberg family had been mounting for some time with abusive exchanges over Facebook before things came to a head in November 2012.
Bundaberg District Court heard Neilen had driven several people to the home of his victim where people from both families became involved in a vicious brawl with people from both groups receiving injuries.
Judge Brendan Butler said the situation escalated when Neilen got in his four-wheel-drive and ran down a woman who had been fighting with his partner.
"You then drove at her and eventually over her with the intent to cause serious injury," Judge Butler said.
"Having driven over her you drove around the road, did a U-turn and drove back and once again the wheels of the car passing over her body.
"Her husband tried to stand in the way and was knocked aside by the bullbar."
The woman was left with a number of injuries including tyre track marks on her face, a fractured fibula, a swollen knee and a dislocated buttock.
"A number of witnesses describe seeing a bone protruding out of her leg," Judge Butler said.
"The tyre did come into contact with her head and caused injury to her face.
"The courts have said a civilised society can't tolerate its citizens using motorcars as weapons for revenge or retaliation."
Neilen's barrister Scott Lynch said his client had been trying to protect his wife when he drove the vehicle at the victim.
He said there was a history of upheaval between the two families and they had gone to the home that day to sort things out.
However the victim says she had never personally met the man who attacked her and that he only came to be at her house because he was with her ex-step grandchild, 18.
The victim said the exchange over Facebook was between her and the 18-year-old, not Neilen or his partner.
"Obviously there wasn't going to be a rational sort it all out around the table," Mr Lynch said.
"No one had the foresight to see it was going to end up in a blow up.
"There was this huge pretty violent thing going on in the front yard and... it's after that the accused becomes involved. He says he was really concerned about what was going on and wanted to save his Mrs."
Neilen pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with the intent to do so and Judge Butler sentenced him to five years in jail with parole eligibility after 20 months on December 1, 2015.
"In my submission the present case involved effectively the car being used as a weapon," Crown Prosecutor Alex Stark said.
"It was very fortunate indeed that ... it did not result in even more substantial injuries or even death."