Woman grabs cousin’s throat outside Bowen pub
A WOMAN who grabbed her cousin's throat so hard she started seeing dots claims she did so to "slap some sense" into the woman.
Courtney Vera Garland left the gaming room at Bowen Hotel when she came across her cousin in October last year.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Sarah Rowe yesterday told Proserpine Magistrates Court Garland had a conversation with the victim and then grabbed the woman's throat, pinning her against a wall of the hotel.
This caused the victim to see dots, have trouble breathing and feel pain after the incident, Sen-Constable Rowe said.
The court heard the assault also left marks and bruises on the victim's neck.
Garland pleaded guilty to three charges including one count each of assault occasioning bodily harm (domestic violence offence) and failing to appear in court.
Lawyer Peta Vernon appeared for the 27-year-old Bowen mother of twins, who sat in the dock wearing a green jumper as she had spent two days in police custody prior to her court appearance.
This was because she failed to appear in court and police picked her up on an arrest warrant on Friday.
Ms Vernon said the assault arose out of a family dispute and Garland was trying to "slap some sense into her" over someone the cousin was hanging out with.
"It was very emotional and in the spur of the moment," Ms Vernon said.
Garland had struggled with methylamphetamine use but she was making an effort to get her life on track and had just started working at a boat storage business in Bowen, Ms Vernon told the court.
Ms Vernon said Garland's mother was looking after her two children in New South Wales as she had been having difficulties coping.
But visiting between Garland and her children was due to start again soon because of the positive steps she had taken in life in finding a job, Ms Vernon said.
"She instructs that after her last appearance before you (Magistrate James Morton) she was scared into really trying to look after her life and better herself," Ms Vernon said.
In relation to the failure to appear in court, Ms Vernon said Garland had tried to phone the courthouse but was told she was too late.
Mr Morton told Garland grabbing her cousin by the throat was not the way to deal with the situation.
Garland needed some help, Mr Morton said.
She was sentenced to 12 months' probation and no convictions were recorded.
Mr Morton sent Garland away with a warning.
"You're running out of get out of jail free cards," Mr Morton said.