Prosecutors push to declare Carnamah man serial family violence offender

Headshot of Liam Beatty
Liam BeattyGeraldton Guardian
Geraldton Courthouse.
Camera IconGeraldton Courthouse. Credit: Supplied

A 37-year-old Carnamah man may be the first in the Mid West to be declared a serial family violence offender following a violent assault on his partner last month.

Vincent Reginald Lewis was arrested by police on March 27, after becoming enraged and attacking the woman for listening to music in bed.

Police say he punched the woman, bit her twice and then attempting to strangle her with a phone charging cord.

He appeared in Geraldton Magistrate’s Court the following Monday, pleading guilty to unlawful assault occasioning bodily harm.

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Police then made an application to the court asking them to declare the man a serial offender under new legislation which came into effect on January 1, a measure which would prevent him holding a firearms licence.

Since the act’s introduction, seven people have been declared serial offenders State-wide, with none so far in the Mid West.

Lewis was remanded into custody, after prosecutor Sgt Troy Guildersleeve said he held “absolutely no faith” he would obey any bail conditions.

Lewis returned to court on Wednesday last week, where his lawyer said they would oppose the application because, despite a history of domestic violence incidents, this would be his first assault conviction.

On this occasion, police did not oppose bail for Lewis to live with his brother in Perth, provided there was a protective condition preventing him from contacting the woman.

Magistrate Chris Miocevich, presiding, said this was a first for the Geraldton court and would require a detailed assessment by an expert.

He was given bail on a $1000 personal undertaking to reside in Perth and ordered to not attempt to contact or approach within 50m of his partner.

“Part of the reason I’m giving you bail is you pleaded guilty straight away which shows me you are owning up to your crime,” he said. “The most important thing now is to follow your bail conditions.”

Lewis will return to Geraldton for sentencing on June 21, before then he will be assessed by an expert from the adult community corrections.

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