Man gets another corrections order after harassing ex-partner

THE former Warrnambool co-ordinator of an Aboriginal family-led decision-making program has received another community corrections order after harassing his former partner with text messages.

Paul Michael Kelly, 29, previously of Dennington and now Geelong, yesterday pleaded guilty in the Warrnambool Magistrates Court to unlawful assault and breaching an intervention order.

The unlawful assault charge related to Kelly reaching around his former partner to try to grab her mobile phone.

Magistrate Ron Saines said although contact was allowed between Kelly and his former partner, the tone, number and timing of text messages sent by Kelly constituted family violence. He said that although a term of imprisonment was not warranted, any further similar offending would likely lead to a jail sentence.

Kelly was convicted, placed on a 12-month CCO, ordered to complete 120 hours of community work and undertake treatment, rehabilitation and a men’s behaviour change program.

Kelly’s barrister Andrew Hale had argued in a contest mention hearing that his client had been allowed to contact his former partner, but Mr Saines determined that the contents of text messages breached the family violence provision of  the intervention order.

In May Kelly was placed on a CCO after assaulting his former partner, threatening her and for false imprisonment.