Baseball bat and sledgehammer and attacks lead to fine

A NEIGHBOURHOOD dispute involving a sledgehammer and a baseball bat has led to a man being fined in Hervey Bay Magistrates Court.

Andrew Robert Spath, 57, pleaded guilty to wilful damage.

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Nicole Kunkel said officers attended a disturbance at a block of units on April 30 after a report someone had smashed a screen door with a sledgehammer.

Snr Const Kunkel said Spath had repeatedly swung the sledgehammer at a neighbour's door, damaging the door and an external screen door.

When the officers went to Spath's unit to speak with him about the incident, the sledgehammer was still in plain sight near an intoxicated Spath, she said.

Duty lawyer Justin Geldard said there were two sides to the story.

Spath's neighbour had tried to run him over in the driveway of the units and had hit him with a baseball bat, Mr Geldard said.

"The police took no action, so he went to deal out his own form of justice," Mr Geldard said.

"You can't take the law into your own hands," Magistrate Graeme Tatnell told Spath.

"I didn't take the law into my own hands," Spath replied.

"I think you did," Mr Tatnell said.

Due to the circumstances and Spath's lack of previous offences, Mr Tatnell agreed not to record a conviction.

Spath was fined $500.



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