10 court stories that shocked the South Burnett in 2018
FROM jilted escorts to axe-wielding home invaders, it's been a gripping year in court for the South Burnett.
Here are 10 of our most high-profile court stories from 2018.
A face pressed up against the window at night, a tomahawk smashing through the door and death threats, was one Murgon woman's horror reality.
The district court judge said the woman no longer felt safe alone, after four men violently invaded her home in June last year.
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"Take a moment to think about the terror you would've caused in this lady," he said.
The 19-year-old was found guilty of 22 charges and is eligible for parole in September.
A 41-year-old Cherbourg man paid a high price for jumping on a senior citizen's head during a brawl last year.
As a result of the incident, Shamus Arnold Cobbo has had two eye operations and now has to wear glasses.
Meanwhile, the older man did not sustain serious injuries but was taken to hospital as a precaution.
Both men were intoxicated and Cobbo's defence lawyer said he had found counselling with psychologists to be a powerful tool.
Cobbo was fined $500 for seriously assaulting a senior citizen.
A Mondure man was granted bail in October last year after he was charged with raping his employee twice on a remote property in the South Burnett.
The man allegedly threatened the victim, a 23-year-old foreign English National, with losing her visa when she did not comply.
The magistrate said the man was at risk of failing to appear in court, not because of his criminal history, but due to the fact he would be shortly settling his Mondure property, and allegedly travelling with substantial amounts of money and no address.
The 48-year-old man reports to the Murgon officer in charge twice a week, and is not to have any contact with any potential witnesses.
A Blackbutt man facing 18 charges in relation to the alleged theft of four tonnes of avocados is set to face court again in 2019.
Steve Moore, 41, was charged with six counts of fraud, six counts of stealing and six counts of receiving stolen property from two avocado orchards in Blackbutt.
Officers from the Kingaroy Major and Organised Crime Squad charged the man on August 24, 2018, following an investigation into the theft of the avocados worth approximately $20,000.
A man who smashed his way into his ex-partner's house, less than four months after being released on a suspended sentence for rape charges, was sentenced to prison.
The Kingaroy man appeared on breach charges for the rape sentence after he smashed his way into his ex-partner's house in August and September 2018.
He smashed a window when she refused to let him inside, and when police arrived they found the man hiding under a sheet, pretending to be asleep.
On another occasion, the man entered through a broken window and hid from police under a doona in the bedroom.
The 27-year-old was charged with breaching a domestic violence order, wilful damage and two trespass offences, and has a parole eligibility date set for April this year.
A father who violently attacked his daughter for allegedly using her phone too much was sentenced to jail with immediate parole in November last year.
The man pleaded guilty to assaulting his daughter after he chased her through Murgon High School and Murgon State School.
While on the school oval, the father tripped his daughter and she fell on her stomach.
The police prosecutor said he kicked her in the ribs twice and punched her in the head.
A woman was left with broken bones and a black eye after she tried to defend herself from a violent attack in a laneway outside a pub last year.
Peyton O'Flaherty was given a 12-month probation order for the assault charge in Kingaroy Magistrates Court on November 5, 2018.
The altercation began when the victim was out drinking with friends and bumped into O'Flaherty on the dance floor of the Commercial Hotel.
The defendant pushed the victim and was subsequently removed from the pub.
She then waited outside for the victim to leave, and grabbed her by the hair and repeatedly punched her in the face.
A 29-year-old woman who was high on ice left her six-year-old child alone in McDonald's for several hours.
The woman told police she'd been using ice in the previous days and was suffering from hallucinations and paranoia.
"She believed her and the young child were being followed, so she went to McDonald's and left him there," the police prosecutor said.
The woman, who had recently been before the district court for an unrelated charge of arson, was serving a two-year suspended sentence.
Due to her mental health history and previous sentencing, she was convicted and not further punished for the offence.
An escort was sentenced to jail after she stole three cars and $25,000 worth of goods from a client who failed to pay her last year.
After the victim left her alone in a shed, the escort called a co-offender to come and pick her up.
Two men arrived at the property and the three of them stole $25,000 worth of electrical items, a welder and other car products.
They piled the stolen goods into a van, and the three of them each stole a car, one of which was later found at Blackbutt, crashed and alight.
Shari Emily Renee Williams, 27, co-operated with police, identified her co-accused, and assisted police with returning the stolen items.
She was granted parole eligibility after two months, on December 28, 2018.
Magistrate Louisa Pink said the series of photographs showing malnourished dogs were shocking and unacceptable depictions of animal cruelty.
In March last year, police officers attended Kathy-Lee Mickelo's home in Murgon where seven puppies and three adult dogs were seized and taken to a vet.
One puppy had died, a female bull terrier had a dirty muzzle and was flea-ridden and the skeletons of the adults dogs were visible.
Mickelo was fined $4000 with 50 per cent of that fine directed to be paid to the RSPCA.
She was also prohibited from owning or obtaining an animal for two years.
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