A 25-year-old man who assaulted his former partner, putting her in extreme fear of her life, has been imprisoned for seven months.
The man, who The Courier has chosen not to name to protect the victim's identity, had been in a relationship with the woman for more than one year before the violence, abuse and controlling behaviour started.
An intervention order was made against the man but a series of family violence incidents occurred, mostly at the victim's Ballarat East home, from September to December in breach of the order.
The couple were going through a separation at the time.
The 23-year-old victim's statement was read to the Ballarat Magistrates' Court on Wednesday during a sentencing hearing by a video link.
She said she now hated her life, felt ashamed and embarrassed, was paranoid, could not trust anyone and was undergoing scans for a possible brain injury caused at the hands of her former partner.
The victim said she had lost all of her possessions and friends, except for one, and became homeless. She said she had to move five times into refuges and safe houses.
"I was living in fear because I was living with other people who knew (my former partner) and I was scared they would tell him where I lived," the victim said in her statement.
"I feel horrified he will harm me again. I feel I won't be able to have a relationship in the future. I won't be able to work again because of my anxiety and fear of seeing someone who knows him.
"I am lonely and I can't do anything about it."
The man's offending started in August when he attended the victim's Ballarat East home and asked the victim to drive him to the Ballarat Railway Station.
Along the way, he asked her to drive him to the Melbourne CBD and she declined because she did not think she could make the distance.
He then punched her to the left eye socket, causing her to feel immediate pain, to black out briefly and have blurred vision.
In another incident, the victim gave the man $300 from her mother so he could pay rent on his Melbourne house but he spent it at the pokies.
When the victim found out the money had been lost, the man became enraged and repeatedly hit her, causing bruises to her arms, legs and body.
Less than two weeks later, the victim was staying at a Tullamarine hotel, organised by a friend, when the man approached her while she was smoking outside.
He raised his right hand and hit the victim on the head with force, causing her head to land on a rock. She was taken to the Royal Melbourne Hospital where she underwent surgery.
The man attended the victim's Ballarat East address on October 21 and 26 in breach of the intervention order. He contacted the victim on her mobile phone 341 times over 17 days in September.
Defence barrister Simon Tan made no further submissions on Wednesday, but said his client had spent 184 days in pre-sentence detention and had felt the impacts of the COVID-19 restrictions in prison.
Magistrate Cynthia Toose said it was clearly not all about the perpetrator.
"The victim has provided to the court a very moving victim impact statement outlining how her life has changed in a very real way," Ms Toose said.
She said the man's behaviour was certainly terrifying and commended the victim for making the victim impact statement.
"Sometimes people are very brave to go through these events again and relive the events and I commend her," Ms Toose said.
The man was sentenced to seven months' imprisonment, with 184 days reckoned as already served, followed by a 12-month community corrections order.
The order includes counselling and a justice plan. He was fined $1500 and disqualified from driving for 12 months.
The man,who has an intellectual disability, pleaded guilty to 17 charges including recklessly causing injury, stalking, criminal damage, making a threat to kill and breaching an intervention order.
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