Brett William Searle.
Brett William Searle. Peter Holt

Repeat offender avoids jail over machete threat

A SERIAL violent offender who threatened to attack a stranger with a machete while he was already on a suspended sentence for breaking another man's jaw, won't go back to jail.

Brett William Searle was previously sentenced to three years in jail, suspended after 12 months, for attacking a man with a pool cue at Mackay in 2014.

He took offence at a photo of a child in their underwear that popped up on a USB that the man had connected to his television.

In sentencing Searle the following year, Judge Julie Dick noted his violent history but accepted his mental health issues had played a big part in the spontaneous attack that left the victim with a broken jaw.

Brisbane District Court heard on Wednesday Searle had been out of jail for seven months when he got into an argument with a man on the street.

The father of three was angry at something the stranger said about his partner and threatened to go and get a machete before trying to punch the man several times.

Searle was sentenced to four months in jail for public nuisance but allowed immediate parole.

The public nuisance charge breached the original suspended sentence for the pool cue attack and prompted Wednesday's hearing.

Defence barrister, Bronwyn Hartigan, told the court on Wednesday that despite her client's minor slip-ups in recent times, his transformation was "quite stunning”.

She said her client had sought support for substance abuse issues and was looking for work through a local job agency and had not committed crimes with the same regularity as before.

The Daily Mercury had previously reported Searle had been banned from the South Leagues Club for drunk and disorderly behaviour.

Judge Leanne Clare said that while the breach offence was another example of violent behaviour, Searle showed signs of rehabilitation and further supervision rather than more jail time was better for him and the community.

She did not activate the suspended sentence and instead extended it for a further 12 months.


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