Chance to do better

A MAGISTRATE has agreed a fresh start and professional help may curb the pattern of “not thinking things through and acting impulsively” following a string of offences by a Mildura man.

Joshua Paynting, 30, pleaded guilty to charges including recklessly causing injury, two counts of unlawful assault, reckless driving and breach of bail when he was sentenced at Mildura Magistrates’ Court on Thursday.

The court heard in September last year Paynting was driving around with two female passengers when the trio pulled over and the accused became involved in an altercation with another group along The Boulevard in Mildura.

Paynting told police he drove away after 13 teenagers “jumped him” and caused significant damage to his vehicle.

However, he returned a short time later to pick up his two female passengers and claimed he was confronted by someone holding a metal bar.

The court was told Paynting was “driving erratically” down The Boulevard and when he attempted to perform a U-turn, he hit a man belonging to the group as he stood in the intersection, causing him to roll across the bonnet of the car.

Paynting then drove away from the scene with the victim suffering grazing and walking with a limp following the incident.

In another incident the court heard Paynting grabbed a man by the neck near the Red Cliffs skate park after he suspected he had stolen his cannabis.

When he was arrested, police found MDMA and methamphetamine in his possession, however he claimed they were not illegal drugs.

In November last year he was involved in an altercation over a mobile phone where he knocked a female out of a shopping trolley and proceeded to strike her in the chest with his elbow.

Paynting told police he had attempted to grab the phone – that he claimed he had loaned to the victim a few months earlier – from her hands.

A psychologist’s report suggested he may have a borderline personality disorder or suffer from autism.

In sentencing, Magistrate Pauline Spencer acknowledged his behaviour demonstrated a pattern of “not thinking things through and acting impulsively” but was confident he could get back on track if he received professional support.

Ms Spencer sentenced him to 30 days imprisonment, already served, an undertaking to be of good behaviour and seek psychological counselling for 12 months and suspended his licence for six months.

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