A Wendouree man’s “monstrous” family violence acts against his intellectually disabled partner is an example where someone could have died, a magistrate has said.
The 21-year-old man, who The Courier cannot name for legal reasons, subjected his then-teenage partner to a number of family violence acts in 2016 after he presented her with a contract stating he was the manager and she was the submissive.
If she did not obey him, he was entitled to assault or kill her, the Ballarat Magistrates Court was told on Thursday.
At the couple’s Wendouree home over a period of time, the man locked the woman in a metal dog cage, made her eat dog faeces and chili, instructed her to lick a dog’s anus, threatened to slit her throat with a knife and burned her with a lighter.
Prosecutor Kevin Doyle said on one occasion, the man ordered the teenager to attach a car battery to her tongue but she refused.
He said the man then grabbed her around the throat and choked her until she could not breath before she agreed to follow his direction. He placed the charger on her tongue, causing an electric shock.
“After that experience of the electric shock, she screamed and (the accused’s) dog attacked her, biting her on the arm. He allowed his dog to continue to attack her which caused an injury to her arm and significant bleeding,” Mr Doyle said.
The court was told the man filmed his partner being attacked by the dog and locked in the cage and kept the material for his own enjoyment and humiliation of her.
Magistrate Ron Saines said the man’s behaviour was the most serious series of domestic violence acts.
“The complainant has an intellectual disability and was a vulnerable person and because of that you took full advantage of her vulnerability,” Mr Saines said.
“A number of acts are monstrous acts of harm, intimidation and humiliation of her. This is an example where someone could die of domestic violence.”
Defence barrister Daniel McGlone said his client had a learning difficulty, could not secure employment and had been exposed to family violence as a child.
The man was sentenced to two years and eight months’ jail with a non-parole period of 18 months. He has already served 315 days in custody.
He pleaded guilty to 11 charges, including false imprisonment, recklessly causing injury and threatening to inflict serious injury.