A talented sportsman with hopes of joining the world of pro baseball again has avoided spending time behind bars after he was handed a suspended jail sentence for his role in the random attack of two people as they walked home.
Bradley Thomas Inglis, 24, was convicted of two counts of assault and sentenced to nine months’ jail, fully suspended for a 12-month good behaviour order, and also fined $3000 in the ACT Magistrates Court on Wednesday (3 August).
He pleaded guilty to one count, while Magistrate James Lawton found him guilty on the other after a hearing.
The court heard that a group of people had been walking home on 20 November 2020 before one of Inglis’s co-offenders startled one of them in what Inglis’s lawyer Tim Sharman described as “an ill-conceived prank”.
A member of the group stuck their middle finger up and closed-circuit television footage captured Inglis yelling at the group and then walking towards them.
Inglis grabbed one victim, who was trying to calm the situation down, and the victim slapped him in the face in what prosecutor Stafford Whitfield called self-defence before being shoved to the ground.
Inglis was also involved in the bashing of another victim along with his two co-defendants who were dragged to the ground and hit and kicked while he was down.
This victim needed three sutures above each eye, was bleeding from his head straight away and had multiple abrasions to his elbow, knees and feet.
Mr Whitfield argued Inglis was “the main party in the physicality” of the incident and the co-offenders were “simply lucky” that the second victim didn’t receive more serious injuries.
One witness said, “I was so scared that my friend was getting punched. [The first victim] and I just stood there, scared”.
“This was a random attack that was unprovoked on three unsuspecting individuals who were walking home,” Mr Whitfield said.
Mr Sharman argued the offence was “not part of his [client’s] make up” and he had shown genuine remorse.
He said his client was a “particularly gifted sportsman”, a baseballer who had won a scholarship to go to the US; however, he had to return home. Inglis hadn’t returned to competitive baseball but intended to.
“This is a man who has learnt his lesson,” Mr Sharman said.
However, Magistrate Lawton said he struggled with that last submission as the court also heard Inglis had been given a non-conviction order for an assault in the Batemans Bay Local Court in March 2022.
All three co-offenders were charged with the more serious joint assault, which the magistrate found was “effectively spontaneous”, and all were liable for it.
However, he emphasised that Inglis was the one who first instigated the violence against the victims.
The attack on members of the public was “in no way justified” and it called for strong deterrence, he said.
Inglis’ co-offenders have already received nine-month suspended sentences but were fined lesser amounts. The co-offenders have not been identified as Region cannot verify their full names.