Recent Article in news.com.au
“A SYDNEY school student has avoided a custodial sentence for choking a female teacher in a classroom, after a court found he was deeply remorseful.
The 16-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had pleaded guilty at Bidura Children’s Court to assaulting the teacher at Randwick Boys High School on June 19 this year.
The 24-year-old woman was treated in hospital for severe swelling and bruising to her neck, chest and hand.
The boy was originally charged with attempted murder but that was later downgraded to assault on a school staff member occasioning actual bodily harm, which carries a maximum seven year custodial sentence.
Magistrate Paul Mulroney today imposed an 18-month suspended control order on the boy on the provision he undertake education and counselling via the juvenile justice system.
Mr Mulroney said he would not impose a custodial sentence due to the remorse shown by the boy.
He said there was “no interest” in the boy being placed in custody.
“It clearly will not provide any lesson. It seems that many of the lessons he needs to learn have already been learnt,” he said.
“There is considerable evidence that (the boy) feels very deep remorse for what he has done.”
Mr Mulroney said the boy had previously been the victim of “excessive physical discipline” from members of his family and at the time of the attack was also under psychological stress because of family issues.
He accepted an expert report that the teacher was “unfortunately in the wrong place at the wrong time” on a day that the boy was feeling “considerable rage and anger”.
The boy is an active member of the Hillsong Church and is now undertaking distance education and is a realistic chance of attending university, the court was told.
Mr Mulroney, however, ordered the conviction be formally recorded to show the seriousness of the crime, adding that teachers needed protection in their workplace.
An apprehended violence order is also imposed for the same 18-month period, preventing the boy from going near his victim. “