9 February 2024

Father allegedly repeatedly abused his partner before amber alert issued for his children

| Albert McKnight
courts law

A man, aged in his 30s, has been refused bail after he was accused of repeatedly assaulting his partner. Photo: Albert McKnight.

CONTENT WARNING: This article refers to alleged family violence.

A man arrested after an amber alert was issued for his children is accused of repeatedly assaulting his partner and not allowing her to leave her home for 60 hours.

The amber alert had been issued after the man, aged in his 30s, was believed to have gone missing with his children earlier this month, but they were found safe several days later.

On Thursday (8 February), he became visibly agitated when he learned he would be refused bail by the ACT Magistrates Court.

“Wow,” he said.

“I’m gonna sue youse for this, you know that.”

The man had previously been granted bail on conditions including that he not contact his partner, except in relation to the care of their children, but was allegedly at her home in southern Canberra late at night earlier this year.

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It is reported they had an argument and she tried to get away from him by walking into the backyard. But he allegedly followed her outside and repeatedly punched her in the head and eye while she crouched on the ground.

He then allegedly forced her back inside and took her phone. She claims she felt she could not leave as she was afraid he would assault her again and was unable to call for help. She didn’t leave the home for about two-and-a-half days.

The man, who is not named to protect the identities of his children, had allegedly assaulted his partner in 2019.

In July 2023, she was eight months pregnant and was in her kitchen with their children when he allegedly threw an object that hit her in the back and lightly punched her in the chest.

She threw a can at him before he allegedly punched her in the eye two or three times.

The man has been charged with five counts of assault as well as single counts of unlawful confinement and dishonestly appropriating property over his alleged treatment of his partner.

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He applied for bail in court on Wednesday and his defence lawyer argued he could live in NSW and reside under a curfew.

The prosecutor, who opposed bail, alleged he had committed a serious assault against his partner, stopped her and her children from leaving the home for 60 hours and took her phone to stop her calling for help.

She also claimed photographs showed significant injuries to the partner’s face.

Magistrate Ian Temby ultimately said the evidence suggested there was a real likelihood of the man committing offences against his partner “and not only further offences but further offences of significance”.

“She is extremely concerned for her safety,” he said of the man’s partner.

He refused bail. The matter will return to court later this month. No pleas were entered.

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