Neighbourhood dispute turns violent
NEIGHBOURHOOD tensions escalated at Mothar Mountain on Friday when feuding locals allegedly resorted to weapons, including a meat cleaver, to sort out their differences.
Two men appeared in custody in Gympie Magistrates Court yesterday, after being arrested for their part in a battle sparked when their neighbour allegedly tried to run one of them down.
The court heard that when Keith John Larson, 53 and his son Talon James Larson, 23, went to the man's home, he greeted them with a meat cleaver and injured one of them with it.
But magistrate Ross Woodford referred to police objections to bail, which appeared to include claims the meat cleaver had been used to slap the neighbour in his home.
The court was told that Keith and Talon Larson, who appeared in custody, were each accused of invading their neighbour's home, bashing and unlawfully detaining him and damaging his property.
A woman sobbed loudly in the public gallery when Mr Woodford denied bail to Keith Larson, saying his main concern was "the safety and welfare of the complainant".
Referring to police objections to bail, he said theprosecution case was that the two Larsons had "forced their way in and violently assaulted him (the neighbour), held him against his will for 30 minutes and bashed him."
Applying for bail, defence solicitor Peter Boyce said the two households had lived on adjoining properties for 18 years and there had been "ongoing issues".
An easement through the Larson property was the scene of an incident in which the neighbour had tried to run over Keith Larson, causing injury.
When the Larsons had gone to the man's home, they were met by the complainant wielding the meat cleaver and one of them was wounded, Mr Boyce said.
He said the dispute had "blown up on Friday night and Saturday morning".
The Larsons had been concerned about "the conduct of the complainant over a long, long time.
"The complainant has been guilty of many things and this was the last straw," Mr Boyce told the court.
Mr Woodford said Keith and Talon Larson and two others had, on police evidence, gone to the complainant's house, "forced their way in and violently assaulted him".
"They held him against his will for 30 minutes and bashed him," he said.
"I refuse bail," Mr Woodford said, adjourning the case to August 28.
Mr Boyce was more successful in obtaining bail for Talon Larson, saying the young man was due to become a father in three weeks and would agree to stay away from the property and live in Bundaberg with his grandparents.
His partner would be able to obtain his belongings from the Mothar Mountain house, he said.
"He didn't go there with a view to undertaking any sort of violence. They wanted to speak to him about how he drove at them on the easement."
Mr Woodford allowed Talon Larson bail in view of his impending fatherhood.