Police fight to save mum, child from horrific abuse
BREAKING: Toowoomba police have a week to place a woman and her child in witness protection as their alleged attacker waits for a second bail hearing.
Toowoomba police arrested a 50-year-old man on Monday night on 12 charges including two counts of deprivation of liberty, threatening violence, and assault of a person over 60, unlawful stalking threatening violence, and burglary.
The offences are alleged to have occurred from early June this year to his arrest on Monday.
The man, who The Chronicle will not name in order to protect the identity of the alleged victims, was denied immediate bail during an application hearing in the Toowoomba Magistrates Court today.
Prosecutor Senior Constable Al Windsor strongly rejected the bail application submitted by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service solicitor Allison Glanville on the grounds police feared the alleged offending would further escalate with "fatal consequences".
Ms Glanville described her client's alleged actions as "out of character" and said his last court appearance was in 2002.
Ms Glanville said her client, who appeared in custody in court wearing watch house-issued clothing, would live with his sister in Ipswich if granted bail, would be able to comply with all court-imposed reporting conditions and orders, and could continue receiving mental health treatment in that city.
"How can you sway me he will comply with bail but won't comply with police directions?" Magistrate Damian Carroll asked Ms Glanville.
She submitted her client would be "mindful of any bail condition" and he had no reason to attend the Toowoomba residence where the alleged offences occurred.
But Snr Const. Al Windsor said the alleged offences were serious to the extent police feared for the victims' lives.
"I haven't encountered a set of circumstances more chilling in the threat to the victims," Snr Const. Windsor said.
He argued the alleged offending had escalated over a short period of time from early June this year to his arrest on Monday night by Toowoomba police, and submitted the Crown's case was strong including admissions from the defendant.
The effect of the man's release on bail would see the woman and her child be forced to relocate into witness protection, and they had since been forced to leave their home where the offending had occurred.
"I can't put it in too strong a terms the concerns police have relayed to me," Snr Const. Windsor said.
Snr Const. Windsor argued Ipswich's close proximity to Toowoomba did not guarantee the victims' safety.
Mr Carroll said the man was facing "very serious allegations" and granted police a week to place the alleged victims in witness protection.
After being assured police could put some measures in place to protect the alleged victims, Mr Carroll adjourned the matter to the same court next Wednesday.