A man has been advised to abstain from alcohol to reduce the risk of further offending as he was sentenced for an assault at a service station last year.
Michael Manley, 47, fronted the Ballarat Magistrates' Court for sentencing on Tuesday after an incident at Redan service station on October 22, 2020.
The police prosecutor, Senior Constable Giles Brown, told the court Manley had attended a service station on Skipton Street about 7.10pm that day.
The court heard he locked himself in the toilets and "began to get irate and verbally abusive".
Senior Constable Brown said Manley was confronted by a staff member when he walked out of the toilets and asked if he had stolen an item from the store.
Manley became verbally abusive and punched the worker in the face, causing him to sustain a cut to his right eye and swelling on his cheek.
The victim and another person were able to detain Manley outside the service station until police arrived.
When they did, Manley was verbally and physically aggressive to police and they observed that Manley smelt of alcohol and was stumbling around.
After being taken to the police station, the court heard Manley threatened police and wrestled with one in the police cell.
He was arrested for being drunk and disorderly, with the behaviour captured on officers' body worn cameras and on the CCTV footage at the station.
On Tuesday Manley pleaded guilty to being drunk and disorderly in a public place and for unlawful assault.
Manley conceded he drank too much and "was intoxicated", telling the court the incident happened during a stressful period in his life.
The court was told Manley had previously been sentenced in the Warrnambool County Court in 2015 for a series of offences, including armed robbery, assault, threatening to inflict serious injury and criminal damage, and had served a 12-month sentence and received a two-year corrections order.
He said he did not drink at all when released from prison but had "slipped up" a few times, including one New Years' Eve when he became intoxicated and had a seizure.
His doctor has since advised him not to drink.
Magistrate Noreen Toohey said the previous conviction was serious but it seemed to her that the assault in Ballarat "occurred as a result of the excessive consumption of alcohol".
She said she would normally consider placing a person on an order but given that his doctor had already told him not to drink it should be "sufficient incentive" for him not to.
Manley was convicted and fined $600.
"You need to understand if you consume alcohol to excess and commit offences that it's not regarded as an excuse under the law."
She encouraged him to reach out for support if he needed it.
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