Angry dad holds son under water
A FATHER grabbed his 12-year-old by the hair and held him under water after the boy made remarks about water conservation.
The 60-year-old man was hosing down the deck of his Warana home in December 2018 when his son told him he was wasting water.
Police prosecutor Phillip Stephens told a court the father grew angry and used the hose to spray the child who was in the pool at the time.
The child then splashed water towards his dad who was swearing at him.
"The defendant has jumped into the pool on top of the victim child and held his head under water for a period of time," Sergeant Stephens said.
"The defendant has eventually let go of the victim child and the victim child has surfaced, coughing and splattering.
"The defendant refused to leave the address at the request of the informant, the mother of the children, and they left the address."
The court heard the boy wasn't injured and didn't require medical treatment.
His mother took him to the police station where they completed an application for a domestic violence order.
In a statement the child made to police in August 2019, he said his dad had tipped him out of a kayak he was using and held him under the water for about 15 seconds.
"The victim child disclosed that he was scared and couldn't remember how he freed himself," Sgt Stephens said.
"He walked over to the steps and got out of the pool crying."
At Caloundra Magistrates Court on Wednesday the man pleaded guilty to the domestic violence offence of common assault.
He cannot be named in order to protect the child's identity.
Sgt Stephens said the man "lost his cool" and submitted a suspended jail sentence was appropriate.
NATIONAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CRISIS SERVICES
Defence lawyer Chelsea Emery said the man was under a lot of pressure at the time of the incident with his business going bust and their waterfront family home at threat.
"My client instructs his son would from time to time call him a loser and also walk around the house with the L sign over his forehead, which was obviously causing my client more distress," she said.
Ms Emery said the man had now lost his business, his waterfront home, his marriage and the relationship he had with his children.
She said he consented to a domestic violence order and agreed the only contact he would have with his children was sending gifts on their birthdays.
Magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist said the incident could be deemed an unusual form of excessive punishment.
He didn't consider a prison sentence appropriate considering the man's limited criminal history and the lack of offending since the incident.
"It would have been fairly frightening to spend 15 seconds or so under water for the child of course but there is no ongoing injuries, or then injuries, in respect of the fallout of the assault," he said.
The man was fined $1500 and the conviction was not recorded.