Repeat intervention order offender fails in jail appeal

A MAN who has persistently breached a court intervention order taken out against him by a Warrnambool family will serve the next three months in jail.

Timothy Hutchins, 55, of Gladstone Street, Warrnambool, had appealed to the Warrnambool County Court against the severity of the sentence.

However, Judge Paul Grant found there were no exceptional circumstances which would allow Hutchins to avoid serving jail time.

In November last year Hutchins pleaded not guilty in the Warrnambool Magistrates Court to three counts of breaching an intervention order.  He was found guilty and the offending breached a six-month suspended jail sentence. Hutchins was sentenced to a total of 12 months’ imprisonment and was ordered to serve three months before being eligible for parole. 

Judge Grant said that in light of Hutchins’ history of offending the magistrate had been “fairly generous and merciful”.

It was the third time the defendant had been in court for breaching intervention orders against the same family in the past two-and-a-half years.

Hutchins had previously served a month in custody for offending against the same family.

The most recent offending involved Hutchins abusing a school crossing supervisor a number of times 15 months after the suspended sentence was put in place.  The victim said the continued harassment had affected his health, he had trouble sleeping, a muscle disorder and was stressed and worried.

In the contested hearing Hutchins denied the incidents had happened and said the allegations were made up as retribution for him having had an affair with the victim’s wife.

This week, defence counsel Michael Turner said his client had a tragic history and mental health issues, and things had only got worse since the last court hearing.

He said Hutchins had skin cancers removed and a number of physical ailments and was “effectively falling apart”.

Mr Turner said his client had struggled with the breakdown of his relationship with a woman. 

“It was not an issue he handled well. He presents as quite pathetic,” Mr Turner said.

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