A Victorian man who carried out a “cowardly and brutal” attack on a woman using a baseball bat has been spared jail.
Matthew Donohue was sentenced to a community corrections order in the Victorian County Court on Monday after pleading guilty to intentionally causing injury.
The 30-year-old admitted he attacked the 44-year-old woman with a baseball bat in suburban Geelong, west of Melbourne, in February 2017.
“This is a cowardly and brutal attack,” Judge Carolene Gwynn said in handing down her sentence.
The brutal assault was carried out in “retribution” after a fight between Donohue’s then-partner and the victim earlier that day.
Later, the then 25-year-old man threw a rock at the victim’s window and was chased away by her friends.
As the victim waited on the footpath, Donohue approached her with a baseball bat.
She tried to flee but tripped and was attacked as she lay on the ground.
“If you are going to bash my missus and my son, I’m going to bash you,” Donohue told the victim during the attack.
The woman was left with a broken nose, broken eye socket and other fractures as well as cuts to her face and forearm.
He fled the scene and his former partner heard him say “I think I’ve killed her”, the court was told.
Donohue’s partner gave him an alibi but later recanted it and he was arrested after returning from Queensland in March 2020.
Judge Gwynne labelled the attack “inexcusable”.
She spared Donohue jail but he was instead ordered to serve a two-year community corrections order including community service, and drug and alcohol treatment as well as behaviour programs.
Originally published as ‘Cowardly’ attacker bludgeoned woman