Tradie’s motorway brake-check had ‘potential for disaster’

A TRADESMAN has received a jail term after a court heard he deliberately hit the brakes in front of his ex-lover's vehicle while travelling on a major highway.

Ipswich Magistrates Court on Tuesday heard the man's actions were in breach of a domestic violence protection order.

He pleaded guilty to contravening domestic violence protection orders as an aggravated offence at Redbank on March 28.

Prosecutor Sergeant Trent Voigt said the woman first noticed the offender's vehicle at traffic lights on Brisbane Rd, Booval.

Several minutes later she saw her ex-partner's vehicle again on the Ipswich Motorway, where it sped up beside her car.

The driver wound down his window and began yelling and making aggressive gestures at her, Sgt Voigt said.

The offender then drove in front of her car and hit the brakes suddenly, forcing her to swerve around him.

The court heard the defendant, who cannot be named, had driven around her car several times before taking the exit at Goodna.

Sgt Voigt said CCTV footage showed him circling and braking for no apparent reason.

Defence lawyer Matthew Fairclough made a point of saying his client had not been charged with dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.

"You cannot form the view it was a danger to her safety," Mr Fairclough said.

Magistrate David Shepherd said the driver manoeuvred his vehicle in such a way that she could perceive it to be threatening.

Mr Fairclough said the man now has a new girlfriend, who is pregnant.

Mr Shepherd said the man's behaviour would have been frightening and potentially dangerous.

"The circumstances, on the face of it, had the potential to cause disaster through the distraction, your driving and harassment with the vehicle," he said.

Mr Shepherd said there had been three previous breaches of the protection order since September last year.

He convicted and sentenced the man to a three-month jail term, immediately suspended for nine months.


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