Jailer anger over ‘light’ punishment

WOODFORD prison officers are expected to push the Queensland Government to appeal the sentence of a convicted triple murderer and rapist who bashed one of their colleagues to within an inch of his life.

John Brian Woodman, 26, pleaded guilty on Wednesday in the Brisbane District Court to one count of seriously assaulting a corrective services officer.

Woodman (pictured) is serving a life sentence after pleading guilty to the murders of Michael Thompson, 30, and 17-year-olds David Lyons and Tyson Wilson at Mr Thompson's North Toowoomba flat on May 30, 2005.

The victims were beaten to death with metal poles and Mr Thompson was also bashed with a hammer.

Woodman will spend another four months behind bars for the assault after earlier serving six months in solitary confinement.

He is now due for parole in late 2020.

Sources inside the prison told the Sunshine Coast Daily that corrections officer John Lerch had been working alone in an education block in February last year when he was king hit from behind by Woodman.

They say Woodman had simply gone to the library intent on "assaulting a screw".

Only the intervention of another prisoner, who stepped in before the arrival of a response team, prevented Mr Lerch potentially being bashed to death.

Officers are now considering approaching the Attorney-General to appeal the four month sentence, which took into account time spent in solitary.

"If you assault a police officer or an ambo it's two years mandatory," one said.

Following the attack no officer works alone in the prison.

"It could have so easily have been a worse outcome given its unexpected nature, the viciousness of the assault and where the blows were directed," prosecutor Michael Lehane told the court.


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