Woman thrown into parked cars

The Courier-Mail - - NEWS - VANESSA MARSH

A US marine de­ployed in Bris­bane vi­o­lently at­tacked a 60-year-old woman, punch­ing her in the face, throw­ing her around like a “rag doll” and re­peat­edly smash­ing her head into nearby cars in an un­pro­voked at­tack, a court has heard.

Tay­lor Wy­att El­wood, 20, only stopped the pro­longed at­tack on the woman in a de­serted carpark at Bris­bane’s Enog­gera Bar­racks when a Fed­eral Po­lice of­fi­cer tried to in­ter­vene and was also at­tacked. El­wood’s lawyer yes­ter­day said his client gave up a uni­ver­sity grid­iron schol­ar­ship that could have led to an NFL ca­reer to serve his coun­try, had been “dis­graced” by his ac­tions and would be dis­hon­ourably dis­charged from the US Army. De­fence lawyer Dave Gar­ratt said El­wood could also po­ten­tially face a court mar­tial. The Couri­er­Mail can also re­veal El­wood’s com­mand­ing offi- cer, Colonel James Sch­nelle, the high­est rank­ing US Marine de­ployed with the con­tin­gent, was re­lieved of his com­mand ear­lier this week af­ter he was caught drinkdriv­ing in Dar­win.

El­wood yes­ter­day pleaded guilty to charges of se­ri­ous as­sault of a per­son over 60, po­lice as­sault and wil­ful dam­age re­lat­ing to the at­tack in July this year.

Po­lice pros­e­cu­tor Glenn Whit­tle said on the day of the at­tack, a 60-year-old woman who worked at the army bar­racks had just got into her car at the fa­cil­ity’s multi-level carpark when El­wood, wear­ing a black mo­tor­bike hel­met, dragged her from the ve­hi­cle and be­gan re­peat­edly punch­ing her in the face.

The pros­e­cu­tor said El­wood then dragged the woman around the park­ing garage “like a rag doll” bash­ing her head into guard rails and cars so hard that a ve­hi­cle was dented and scratched.

“The vic­tim states she re­ally be­lieved she was go­ing to die,” he said.

Mr Gar­ratt said the 20year-old had been of­fered a full schol­ar­ship to play grid­iron at uni­ver­sity which could have led to an NFL ca­reer but he turned it down to join the marines.

He said El­wood knew he had “brought shame to US Marine Corps and also his coun­try” and that his ac­tions had im­pacted the re­la­tion­ship be­tween the Aus­tralian and US de­fence forces.

“He’s got no idea why he be­haved in this ap­palling man­ner,” Mr Gar­rett. “He’s an out­stand­ing marine.”

El­wood was sen­tenced to 15 months’ im­pris­on­ment which will be sus­pended af­ter he has served three months. He was also or­dered to pay $3000 resti­tu­tion and $1331 for dam­age to a ve­hi­cle.

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