Re­leased af­ter con­tempt charge: Crim pleads to 1± of­fences

Townsville Bulletin - - News - by Roanne John­son roanne. john­son@ townsville­bul­letin. com. au

A MAN jailed for con­tempt of court af­ter re­fus­ing to give ev­i­dence in a mur­der trial said he did not take the stand be­cause the stab­bing vic­tim was an al­leged pae­dophile.

Joshua Car­man, 31, claimed last year he had been threat­ened with vi­o­lence if he tes­ti­fied but has now re­vealed he did not want to give ev­i­dence be­cause he had found out the dead man, Mark Dim­mack, 39, may have b e e n a c hi l d s e x of­fender.

T h e d e c e a s e d ’ s s o n K o r r i Dim­mack, 21, faced trial over his fa­ther’s al­leged mur­der but was ac­quit­ted by a jury on July 29, 2010.

Car­man, who was a firm friend of the de­ceased af­ter form­ing a last­ing friend­ship while the pair were serv­ing time in jail, was with hi m when he was ki l l e d i n Cor­co­ran Park at Her­mit Park on Au­gust 20, 2009.

‘‘ He wit­nessed his good mate be­ing stabbed to death and had to give him CPR, only to end up with blood in his mouth – it was very trau­ma­tis­ing,’’ de­fence bar­ris­ter Tony Collins said.

Fol­low­ing the death Mr Collins said the de­fen­dant at­tended the fu­neral where he was told by fam­ily mem­bers that his dead friend was a pae­dophile and had been in jail for child sex of­fences.

‘‘ It was very dif­fi­cult for my client to have his be­liefs in this man he looked up to shat­tered,’’ he said.

Mr Collins said it was af­ter hear­ing this rev­e­la­tion his client re­fused to be a wit­ness over the al­leged mur­der.

‘‘ He flatly re­fused to give ev­i­dence be­cause he was aware of the back­ground of the de­ceased,’’ Mr Collins said.

He was in cus­tody on un­re­lated mat­ters and or­dered to give ev­i­dence in the Townsville Supreme Court.

But when it was Car­man’s turn in the wit­ness box he promptly sat down in the cells cor­ri­dor and re­fused to move.

So, shack­led in hand­cuffs and leg irons, he was lit­er­ally dragged by three prison of­fi­cers across the car­pet of the court­room to the stand where he started an al­most in­co­her­ent rant about the ju­di­cial sys­tem, made abu­sive com­ments to the judge and de­fence bar­ris­ter then made it clear he would not an­swer any ques­tions.

Jus­tice Kerry Cul­li­nane sent him back to the cells, re­mark­ing ‘‘ I’ll be see­ing you a lit­tle later’’.

Car­man ap­peared be­fore Judge Cul­li­nane, af­ter the mur­der ac­quit­tal, who made it clear that re­fusal to give ev­i­dence in a court struck at the heart of the ju­di­cial sys­tem. Jus­tice Cul­li­nane jailed Car­man for six months.

Car­man ap­peared this week af­ter com­plet­ing the jail sen­tence, only to be locked up again for 13 of­fences he pleaded guilty to com­mit­ting af­ter wit­ness­ing the killing, be­tween Au­gust 21, 2009 and De­cem­ber 25, 2009. The de­fen­dant was found in breach of a sus­pended sen­tence by Judge Terry Martin SC and or­dered to serve three years’ jail, with a pa­role date of Oc­to­ber 25, 2012.

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