Celebrated businessman banned over violence
A CELEBRATED Top End businessman and philanthropist has been banned from the Turf Club following a random, inexplicable, "sudden explosion of quite fearsome anger and violence" after a boozy lunch at Silks last year.
Luke Myall, 41, pleaded guilty in the Darwin Local Court to aggravated assault after admitting to grabbing a perfect stranger by the throat, slamming him to the ground and unleashing a flurry of punches to his head as he lay unconscious on the ground on October 25.
In asking for a good behaviour bond, Myall's lawyer John Tippett QC told the court the award-winning Katherine businessman and one time Kormilda College captain was "appalled" by his behaviour on the night.
Mr Tippett said what inflamed his client's drunken rage remained "unclear" other than a potential "perceived slight" from the blameless victim or a "brain fade" on Myall's part.
"He's never engaged in behaviour anything like this before in his life and he finds that he is engaged in it and the whole thing has been quite confronting and frightening for he and his family who are shocked, to put it mildly, by his conduct," he said.
"He just finds that the whole event is inexplicable but for the involvement of alcohol, which he has reduced in terms of consumption enormously, he doesn't go out and drink anymore."
Mr Tippett said Myall was otherwise of exemplary character, having contributed to numerous good causes throughout his life and had offered the victim a sincere apology and to pay to replace his $2000 phone that was damaged in the attack.
"It just beggars belief that this man would find himself in this situation, it's publicly humiliating for him and he is a particularly good man as you can see," he said.
"Certainly he understands that if there was any other occasion or a repeat, then all of the goodwill that he has developed over the years in the community will have evaporated."
In handing Myall a four month jail sentence, suspended immediately, judge Dick Wallace said "if it wasn't for your spotless record it's pretty certain you'd be going to jail".
Mr Wallace said "nothing explains your sudden explosion of quite fearsome anger and violence" towards the man he had never met and who was "at least, still badly shaken by the event".
"(You) then started, in an uncontrollable manner, just hitting him as hard and fast as you could in the head, again, dangerous and sustained use of force of the sort which is really horrifying to think of," he said.
"(It) certainly would have horrified and scared those in the bar who watched it, one or two of whom were moved, I'm glad to say, to leap upon you and pull you apart before more damage could be done."
Originally published as Celebrated businessman, philanthropist banned from Silks after 'explosion of violence'