Singer avoids jail after stabbing former partner
A singer songwriter has avoided jail time after stabbing her former partner with a knife.
Maroochydore District Court heard Keely Eggmolesse was in a toxic relationship with her partner of three years when a heated argument broke out on April 24, 2018.
Crown prosecutor Will Slack said "tensions were high" after the man had been drinking at Eggmolesse's Nambour home throughout the day.
"Late in the afternoon, the defendant's mother heard them arguing and she attempted to gain access to the garage but this was prevented by the defendant," Mr Slack said.
"The defendant also prevented the complainant from leaving the garage that afternoon.
"The defendant armed herself with a knife, became aggressive and swung it at the complainant and it struck him ... "
The man, in his 20s, was taken to hospital with a 1cm puncture wound.
He was initially reluctant to speak with police about what happened.
"The offence is aggravated by the fact that it is a domestic violence offence and also the offence involved the use of a potentially lethal weapon," Mr Slack said.
He said a prison sentence of two years to two-and-a-half years was appropriate.
"Given the background to the relationship, the somewhat small delay in this case, her antecedents and also that she is a sole carer for one child- your honour's discretion may extend to releasing her as of today, however, the cases which I have referred your honour to support the view that a period of actual imprisonment for these offences, with the use of a knife in a domestic setting, can attract periods of actual imprisonment."
In reply, judge Glen Cash said actual jail time was "the more common result" in cases where a knife was used in a domestic setting.
"But of course there is a category of cases where the balancing of the relevant considerations might result in a sentence that doesn't involve immediate imprisonment," Mr Cash said.
Eggmolesse on Wednesday confirmed her guilty plea to the domestic violence offence of wounding.
Defence barrister Nathan Turner said his client, who had moved to the Gold Coast, felt shame and regret over the incident and that she was of "good character".
"The offending occurred against a background of a toxic relationship that involved significant domestic violence," he said.
"It was relatively spontaneous and, as I've noted at the outset, thankfully only caused a minor injury - a 1cm superficial puncture wound."
Mr Turner said Eggmolesse had demonstrated significant rehabilitation over two years and had been able to provide a stable home for her son.
"She has been awarded a number of scholarships and traineeships and worked with the Sunshine Coast Council and also, consistent with the major in her bachelors degree, she worked for a period with Accor Hotels in the Sofitel Group," Mr Turner said.
He said she currently worked as a regional co-ordinator for Seed Indigenous Youth Climate Network and was an advocate for many causes.
"She also has a passion for music and she's pursuing that passion," Mr Turner said.
"It's brought her to the stage where she's in the process of having her debut EP produced."
He asked Mr Cash to consider a sentence of probation, so not to record a conviction, which would allow her to pursue a career internationally.
He also said her family would suffer significant hardship if she was ordered to serve actual jail time.
Mr Cash described the matter as "very unusual".
"The offending in which you were engaged is, in my view, serious but it was situational," he said.
"And what I mean by that is, it seems to be a product of the dysfunctional relationship between you and the complainant.
"I therefore assess it as unlikely to be behaviour that would be repeated by you."
Eggmolesse was sentenced to 18 months' jail, suspended immediately for two years.
*For 24-hour domestic violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.