A food delivery worker with a history of domestic violence has been given a nine-month probation order.
The Magistrate’s Court yesterday heard Paulo Jorge De Carvalho admit a charge of breaching the peace following an incident on June 6th.
It was described as the latest in a string of offences for domestic violence and De Carvalho was warned by Magistrate Bridget Shaw that a repeat would lead to an inevitable term of imprisonment.
Police Legal Advisor Suzie Sharp said De Carvalho, 36, who had been remanded in custody awaiting sentencing, was involved in two previous instances of domestic violence in the last two years.
Ms Sharp said: “On this occasion the defendant was in a new relationship as they had only been together a few months. A verbal argument occurred between both of them and he allowed this to escalate, whereas he should have left the premises.
“He remained in the house and the row escalated into a physical altercation. There was a scuffle and both parties suffered minor bruises and abrasions. He fled to the toilet and she locked him in it. She left the premises and a neighbour alerted the police.”
Ms Sharp told the court of two previous assaults, one in September 2014 and another in November last year.
Ms Sharp said: “What is clear is that we have a history of domestic assault, both in 2014 and last year. On these occasions verbal altercations have escalated into violence. The defendant has failed to recognise his need to walk away and not allow matters to escalate.”
Defending Advocate James Bell said De Carvalho was remorseful.
Mr Bell said: “Each incident has been at the low level of domestic violence but the defendant does acknowledge that on three occasions in the last two years he has come before the court. He does regret that.
“He does understand he must not allow himself to get into another situation. He does not wish to resume the relationship and both parties have gone their separate ways. The relationship was strained and the lady has acknowledged she was at least partly responsible for this matter escalating.
“While in custody he has had time to reflect and he has started a course on relationships. He wishes to move on in life. He is in employment with a food delivery company and he wants to get back on his feet.”
Magistrate Mrs Shaw said: “This court will always take instances of domestic violence very seriously. Everyone in a relationship should be able to trust their partner and feel secure. Arguments should not develop into violence.
“This is not the first time something like this has happened. You should have learnt from previous court appearances and you should have left the premises.
“I could impose a community service order or imprisonment, but you have already spent some considerable time in custody. That is your punishment in a sense for this offence.
“This probation order is designed to build on the start you have made while in prison. If you don’t follow this direction there is likely to be more violence and these are the type of cases where tragedies occur. Fortunately, you have not caused serious harm, but there is always that risk.”
Mrs Shaw urged De Carvalho to continue to attend a relationship course, saying: “It will take a lot of effort on your behalf to change your way of thinking.”
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