‘Please don’t hurt me’: Victim’s heartbreaking plea
TEARS marked a sponsored scooter rider's face as he avoided jail after ramming his partner's head into a wall and choking her in a jealous rage.
Dylan Connell-Bartolo, 21, faced Southport District Court on Wednesday, supported by a crowd of family members watching on.
He pleaded guilty to choking, assault occasioning bodily harm, common assault and two counts of wilful damage in the wake of the attack on his 19-year-old partner at her Surfers Paradise home on March 2, 2018.
Connell-Bartolo and the woman had been dating about a year, in what the court heard was a "volatile relationship".
The woman left the home and Connell-Bartolo "accused her of being unfaithful".
"An allegation often made, mysteriously, in cases like this," Judge Bernard Porter QC said while summing up.
When the woman returned later on, an argument broke out, Connell-Bartolo tried to hug her and she told him not to.
"You then responded by grabbing her by the arms and pulling her towards the bedroom," Judge Porter said.
"As she tried to escape you grabbed her and pushed her against the wall."
Judge Porter said Connell-Bartolo "grabbed her by the neck" and "pushed her head against the wall".
He then "squeezed her neck for a few seconds and she struggled for breath".
The woman slipped away, ran to another room "and locked the door to get away".
Connell-Bartolo "managed to get in and then screamed at her, questioning her what she was doing on her phone".
"She was sitting on the bed and you approached her and she said 'please don't hurt me, please don't touch me'," Judge Porter said.
"You put your hand onto the back of her neck and pushed her back onto the bed and squeezed her neck for five to 10 seconds so she couldn't breathe.
"She started to panic because she couldn't breathe and when you let go of her she screamed."
Connell-Bartolo used a pillow to muffle the noise, before he asked the woman why she wouldn't hit him, punched himself in the head and hurled her phone out the window.
He then left the unit, leaving a hole in a wall.
Defence barrister David Funch said Connell-Bartolo had no prior criminal history.
He said Connell-Bartolo was young, the offending was "very out of character" and "he recognises that his behaviour's disgraceful, disgusting".
Mr Funch handed up letters of support and a letter of apology from Connell-Bartolo, who he said volunteered at an age care facility, taking seniors for walks.
The court was told Connell-Bartolo took up counselling of his own volition and that he had an "impressive work history".
Judge Porter said Connell-Bartolo was "on the edge of going to jail", but he was granted "one more chance".
Connell-Bartolo was sentenced to 18 months jail, suspended immediately for three years, and placed on probation for one year. He must pay $500 in restitutions.
Mr Funch said Connell-Bartolo planned to return to Urunga in NSW.