Former state government candidate mounts own defence
COWS crossing a road was the catalyst to record a video that ended in violence, and landed the man who filmed it in hospital.
The injured film recorder Ricky Boyce Abraham accused his neighbour Anthony 'Tony' Parr of beating him up after alleging the Lockyer Valley farmer deliberately drove at him on a quad bike.
A three-day trial before Ipswich District Court, a jury has found Tony Parr not guilty of all charges.
Mr Parr, 45, from Haigslea, defended the charges against him that alleged he dangerously operated a motor vehicle near Lowood on May 20, 2017; and two charges of assaulting Ricky Boyce Abraham causing him bodily harm.
Mr Parr had no legal counsel and represented himself in the Crown case.
He maintained the incident was one of self-defence and alleged he was attacked first by Mr Abraham, claiming he tried to pull him off the quad bike and tore his shirt.
Prosecutor Evan O'Hanlon-Rose opened the Crown case telling the jury that neighbourhood disagreements could spiral quickly out of control and in this case Mr Parr had driven his quad bike at Mr Abraham who was hit then thrown from it into a table drain beside Patrick Estate Road near Sippels Road intersection.
The Crown alleged Mr Parr got off the quad bike and attacked Mr Abraham.
Photos were shown that depicted Mr Abraham in a hospital bed with facial injuries and wearing a neck brace, and a shirtless Mr Parr with no injuries.
Abraham suffered broken ribs, fractures to his spine, and bruises to his lips and around his eyes.
Parr told the jury he was representing himself as he could not afford a barrister and been declined legal aid.
"This is a case of credibility," Mr Parr said.
"Police credibility, Director of Public Prosecutions, my credibility and Ricky Abraham's.
"What a reasonable person would do given the circumstances. My fear for my life or injuries.
"The altercation with Ricky Abraham was not ongoing. When I felt comfortable, safe, I stopped. I didn't go on with it. I had the capability to do serious ….".
"I had to be wary of this man, he is a violent man and has hurt people badly".
Mr Abraham, 49, told the court he was at home when he drove his Toyota Kluger down the road where a bloke was putting cattle across the road.
"I stood and took photos of the cattle with my phone," he said.
"The cattle were all spread across the road and this bloke was riding around on a four-wheeler."
Mr Abraham said he told the man (who he did not then know) he was "getting evidence".
"He circled my car a few times then swerved his four wheeler at me and I jumped out of the way," he said.
"I was standing at the front of the car he drove at me. All I could do was jump on the front carrier (of the quad bike).
Mr Abraham said that after he was thrown off into a drain Mr Parr had tried putting his arm around his throat to push his head down and jumped onto his back.
"He was beating me. I was in pain. I just lied there he was punching me. Felt like seeing stars," he said.
Mr Abraham said Mr Parr rolled him over and "sat on top of me".
"I said I've had enough, had enough. He said I'm going to smash your face in, smash your phone.
"He stopped after I said I've had enough."
Mr Abraham said he spent two days in hospital and received stitches to a cut above the left eye.
Mr Abraham, when cross-examined, denied he went up to Mr Parr that day to be provocative, or cause trouble. He told the court Mr Parr would move his cattle across the road at night and that "I was just trying to save someone's life".
Mr Parr claimed he had to defend himself because Mr Abraham had been provocative.
Mr Parr told the court he had no intention of hurting the man - "all I wanted was to move my cows across the road".
Mr Abraham said all he was trying to do was "save someone".
"You were moving cattle late at night, no lights, no signs. Cars go past at 180km/h."
No photos of the cows said to be taken by Mr Abraham were tendered as evidence.
Judge Dennis Lynch QC addressed the jury, mentioning how Mr Abraham told police while in hospital he had three photos of the cows on his phone which was at home. He told the court he saw Mr Parr smash his phone and throw it into a paddock.
The jury returned a not-guilty verdict.