Man bailed to care for mum

Strict con­di­tions for de­fen­dant fac­ing threat to kill charges, as­sault

Wangaratta Chronicle - - News -

A MAN await­ing trial for al­legedly plac­ing an im­i­ta­tion firearm in the mouth of his for­mer part­ner in June was granted bail in Wan­garatta Mag­is­trate’s Court on Mon­day so he could care for his sick mother.

Scott Somers, 47 - who is fac­ing mul­ti­ple charges in­clud­ing mak­ing threats to kill as­sault, pos­sess­ing an im­i­ta­tion hand gun, and as­sault - was re­fused bail by Mag­is­trate Ian Watkins in July be­cause he had not proven “ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances” for his re­lease.

On Mon­day Se­nior Con­sta­ble Mindy Ste­wart, from Wan­garatta po­lice fam­ily vi­o­lence unit, op­posed the bail ap­pli­ca­tion telling the court the ac­cused had an ex­ten­sive prior his­tory of mak­ing threats to kill, breach­ing court or­ders, as­sault with a weapon, and fail­ing to ap­pear at court.

She said Somers had also been con­victed for as­sault­ing his pre­vi­ous part­ner in 2017 in Gipp­s­land which caused se­vere in­juries to the vic­tim who is now liv­ing in cri­sis ac­com­mo­da­tion and in fear for her life.

“It took nine months for po­lice to lo­cate the de­fen­dant to face court for the pre­vi­ous charges after he ig­nored bail con­di­tions,” Sen Const Ste­wart said.

Jonathon Rat­tray, repre- sent­ing Somers, told the court his client would dis­pute the charges from ear­lier this year.

He said the de­fen­dant’s mother, aged 73 and in a wheelchair who lived at Wyndham Vale, re­quired a vir­tual full-time carer which was cur­rently her niece, how­ever, that ar­range­ment was about to end.

The carer gave ev­i­dence say­ing she could no longer de­vote the time as a carer and needed to re­train and get work to pro­vide a fu­ture for her 12 year old daugh­ter.

Somers’ mother of­fered a $1000 surety for bail with the de­fen­dant to re­side at his 30 year old’s cousin’s home, which was de­scribed as “just around the cor­ner from his mother’s place”.

De­spite the con­tin­ued op­po­si­tion to bail by po­lice, Mag­is­trate David Faram granted Somers bail, say­ing he was sat­is­fied that new and ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances had been proved.

Somers’ bail con­di­tions in­cluded daily re­port­ing to Wer­ribee po­lice, not to leave Vic­to­ria, not to con­tact wit­nesses, abid­ing by ex­ist­ing in­ter­ven­tion or­ders and a daily cur­few from 9pm to 6am.

The mat­ter was ad­journed un­til Septem­ber 24.

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