Soldier’s drunken rant
Break-up with ex led to offence
A former NRL rising star turned junior soldier who barged into his ex-girlfriend’s bedroom in the middle of the night, yelling profanities and punching her TV, has walked from court on a suspended sentence.
Gunner Jayden Jackson Troy Jones pleaded guilty in the Defence Force Magistrates’ Court to one count of drunkenly creating a disturbance on service land at Darwin’s Robertson Barracks last year.
The court heard the victim had been the now 22-year-old’s first serious girlfriend before she broke up with him and he “forced his way in” to her room about 2.30am on June 25.
The young private was watching a movie with another male soldier at the time, who locked himself in the bathroom as Jones pounded on the door and yanked at the handle while accusing her of being “unfaithful”.
Two other soldiers arrived after hearing the commotion and tried to get Jones to leave but he instead punched her TV and only left when he was “escorted away” by military police.
Jones’ defence barrister Mary Chalmers SC said her client had played rugby league “at an NRL level” before joining the army in 2019 with “aspirations to join the special forces”.
Captain Chalmers said the woman had been his “first intimate relationship” and he had “had some difficulty accepting that ‘It’s over’ means it’s really over’”.
“What he was dealing with for the first time was that particularly intense hurt and emotional rollercoaster of the break-up of his first relationship,” she said.
“In terms of the disturbance itself, it hasn’t disturbed military activity, it’s disturbed sleep.”
In handing Jones a sentence of 40 days in a military prison at Holsworthy Army Barracks, magistrate Scott Geeves told him he had “let (himself) down on this occasion, badly”.
“You disgraced yourself and you caused that young lady … a great degree of hurt,” he said.
“(When) a female partner of yours says ‘Listen this is over’, that’s exactly what it means.
“It was more than an emotional experience for her – it would have been a frightening one for her.” Group Captain Geeves said he would fully suspend the sentence so Jones did not have to spend any time behind bars, taking into account his genuine remorse and a series of glowing character references from army top brass.
“One can only hope that the victim in this matter can go on to continue, as she rightly deserves, a fruitful and long career in the army free from any other manner of behaving in the way that you did on that night,” he said.