Leniency given to assault mum
Wednesday, 20th March, 2013
A magistrate condemned the actions of a woman who had punched her teenage daughter but spared her from jail yesterday.
Betty-Anne Elizabeth Ebsworth, 32, pleaded guilty to the assault which happened in the yard of a Thomas Lane house on January 11.
According to police, Ebsworth set upon her daughter after she became involved in an argument between two other people.
She punched her to the back of the head and face a number of times, causing her nose to bleed.
Yesterday, Ebsworth's lawyer, Rebecca Mitchell, told the Local Court that since the incident the relationship between the pair had broken down and Ebsworth was trying to repair it.
She said since the attack Ebsworth had also reduced her use of cannabis and had not consumed any alcohol.
"She said to me she feels like the worst mother ever," Ms Mitchell told the court.
Magistrate Geoff Dunlevy said the police facts revealed a "very serious" assault that would have been frightening for the girl.
He told her he "denounced" her actions but added that it would not be in the best interests of the community to send the mother and sole carer of four children, the youngest of which is three, to prison.
Instead, he said he would extend to her "a certain degree of leniency" and, as an act of mercy, impose a seven-month suspended jail sentence.