Bowen teen hits girlfriend’s brother with car, flees scene
AN ONGOING dispute between two men reached boiling point in Bowen when one of the men hit the other with his car then quickly left the scene and tried to cover up his crime.
Esko Auda claims he drove away because he was scared of his victim and hadn't meant to hit him with the car in the first place.
The 18-year-old man fronted Bowen Magistrates Court and pleaded guilty to three charges, including failing to remain at an incident scene to render assistance and failing comply with learner driver requirements.
Magistrate James Morton told Auda he had used the car as a weapon.
"You've left him and you didn't even stop to see if he was OK," Mr Morton said.
"Whatever the animosity is, it's made worse now, this is not going to end.
"The court doesn't condone any retribution that's for certain, or anybody taking the law into their own hands."
Police prosecutor Sergeant Emma Myors told the court Auda, a learner driver at the time, saw the victim walking along Crofton St in July when he drove to the other side of the road and hit the man with the car.
The man landed on the windscreen and was then thrown onto the road.
Sgt Myors told the court he suffered cuts to his head and back that required stitches, but Auda kept driving.
Sgt Myors said Auda removed the registration plates from his car and then stored the car away, covering it up with a tarp.
Lawyer Cleo Rewald appeared for the Bowen teen, saying he was in a relationship with the victim's sister and they are expecting their first child.
The court heard Auda's sister was also in a relationship with the victim for a short time, but when Auda told his sister the relationship wasn't a good idea, bad blood started to brew.
Ms Rewald claimed Auda had received threats of being killed and bashed by the victim.
On the day of the crash, the victim had gone to Auda's mum's house, which made her scared.
The court heard Auda was driving over there when he came across the victim on Crofton St.
Ms Rewald said Auda had meant to pull up alongside the man but he ran towards the car.
The victim stood up and started threatening to kill Auda so he drove away, Ms Rewald said.
"He instructs he's very fearful of (the victim), it doesn't detract from what's occurred but he is very fearful that he's going to be killed or seriously injured," Ms Rewald said.
"He feared for his own safety at that time and drove off in a panic."
Mr Morton said Auda was lucky he hadn't killed or disabled the man, but also lucky he hadn't been charged with a more serious offence such as dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.
If he had concerns about the man, he should go to the police, Mr Morton said.
"In the interests of justice a message must be sent to you and other people who conduct themselves in a like manner," Mr Morton said.
Auda was fined a total of $1150 and disqualified from driving for three months.
Convictions were recorded.