Online bullying blamed for assault on pregnant woman
A WOMAN who assaulted her pregnant former friend claims the woman subjected her to consistent online bullying.
Shanice Ann Henaway fronted Bowen Magistrates Court after she slapped the woman on the face and broke both side mirrors on her car.
Police prosecutor Sergeant Emma Myors told the court Henaway verbally abused the victim, who was 21 weeks pregnant, outside her home in May and said "Your face isn't pregnant, b----."
Sgt Myors said the victim put her arms up over her face and stomach to protect herself, but Henaway grabbed her arms and dug her nails in.
The woman pushed Henaway away, so she then slapped the woman across the face.
Sgt Myors said Henaway snapped off one side mirror of the victim's car, then tried to cause damage to a second vehicle in the driveway.
She then returned to the first vehicle and broke the second side mirror on the victim's car.
Sgt Myors said police later interviewed Henaway who denied going to the woman's house and assaulting her.
The 26-year-old Bowen woman pleaded guilty to one count each of common assault and wilful damage.
Lawyer Jake Burke said Henaway was unemployed after previously working at Centrelink in Townsville, but she resigned to move back to Bowen after a relationship break-up.
Mr Burke told the court the friendship between Henaway and her victim had turned sour.
He said the woman had subjected Henaway to "consistent abuse" through online bullying.
Mr Burke said that came to a head on the day of the assault, when there was a scuffle at the doorway of the residence.
He said Henaway tried to get into the house but was unsuccessful.
"My instruction is that there was no real intention to harm the pregnant woman, certainly not the baby," Mr Burke said.
Mr Burke said Henaway was remorseful for her actions and the incident was out of character.
Magistrate James Morton labelled the assault "disgraceful" and the "hallmark of somebody that needs to grow up".
"She's pregnant, she's vulnerable," Mr Morton said.
"If bullying online is such a concern for you and she's saying stuff about you, forget about it, it's not going to get you anywhere."
Henaway was fined a total of $800 and ordered to pay $346 restitution within two months for damage to the car.
No convictions were recorded.