Axe-wielding man ‘explodes’
The Cairns Post (Australia)
By Bronwyn Farr
September 30, 2022 Friday
Squabble over drugs ends in strangulation A MAN convicted of chasing people through Edmonton armed with an axe was sentenced for a violent episode just six days after he received a 15-month probation order.
Shaun Cameron Day, 31, was convicted on November 21 after being arrested near a Bruce Highway service station where he tried to get inside while armed with an axe.
He faced Cairns District Court on Thursday and pleaded guilty to strangulation in a domestic setting, assault with bodily harm, common assault and wilful damage.
The court heard Day was in a 10-week relationship, living with a 43-year-old woman, and the relationship ended after an alleged argument about drugs on December 4.
The following day, he accused the woman of stealing cigarettes from him, strangled her with both hands where she could not breathe for 15 seconds, and punched her more than once in the head, causing injuries which required medical treatment.
Defence barrister Rachelle Logan produced a psychologist’s report done for the previous offending, but Judge Anthony Rafter was scathing in his assessment of it, labelling it “psycho babble”.
“The report reflects what we often see in these psychological reports, the psychologist has uncritically accepted the defendant’s version of everything,” Judge Rafter said.
Reading from the report, he said “to understand the offending behaviour, the neurological biology of the brain must be understood”, adding “it all sounds like psycho babble”.
He noted the report said Day had PTSD and “was unable to figure out the meaning of what was going on”.
“What went on here is a trivial event (lost cigarettes) and your client exploded,” he said.
“Sometimes what is given in a psychologist or psychiatrist report defies commonsense.” Judge Rafter gave a head sentence of two-and-a-half years’ prison, with parole from September 29 based on 298 days spent in pre-sentence custody. Judge Rafter noted the complainant was in court.