TWO women whose car was stopped by three drunk men yesterday described being terrified as the driver was spat on.
James Porter-Cullen, 23, previously of Coulstock Street,Warrnambool, pleaded not guilty in the Warrnambool Magistrates Court to unlawful assault and causing criminal damage.
He was found guilty of unlawful assault when he spat on the driver but the charge of causing criminal damage to the car was dismissed.
Mr Porter-Cullen was convicted and sentenced to serve an additional 14 days on top of his existing four-month jail term.
Melissa Kelly told the court that on August 13 last year she was driving north on Cramer Street with her friend Olivia Karlson to get a DVD.
She said that as she went through the roundabout she saw three young men standing in the middle of the road. She tooted her horn, stopped her car because she didn’t want to run them over and wound down her window.
Ms Kelly said a man threw a can of alcohol at her car and spat at her through the window.
“The can hit the top of my car, I think,” she said. The spit hit me on the side of my forehead.
“It was the same male who threw the can. I saw him spit, he was right near my window.”
Ms Kelly said she went to the Warrnambool police station.
She said she also remembered two men bashing on the front of her car with their hands, which caused the front bumper bar to drop.
The driver said that at the time she thought she and Ms Karlson could have been hurt and felt disgusted when spat on.
When it was put to her in cross-examination that any saliva could have been caused by yelling, Ms Kelly said: “no, it was a full-on spit”.
Ms Kelly said Ms Karlson knew two of the men and named them as Sage Jennings and James Porter.
Ms Karlson said she thought she and Ms Kelly might be attacked by the drunk men: “They were really angry”.
In an interview with police played to the court, Mr Porter-Cullen said he was not in Cramer Street when the incident took place and he “completely denied” all allegations.
Magistrate Jonathan Klestadt said Ms Karlson told the court she recognised Mr Jennings and Mr Porter-Cullen.
He said despite the time of day and the potential for witnesses to be unreliable he accepted the evidence of Ms Karlson.
However, the magistrate was not convinced that Mr Porter-Cullen damaged the car and that charge was dismissed.
The magistrate said Mr Porter-Cullen had behaved in a disgraceful way and it was a particularly disgusting act to spit on anyone.