Mother's plea to Mooloolaba coward punch killer
THE mother of a man killed in a one-punch attack on the Mooloolaba Esplanade has begged the Sunshine Coast man who threw the punch to think of her before he ever punches anyone else.
Jesse James Patrick, 23, pleaded guilty in Brisbane Supreme Court to the 2014 manslaughter of Bruce "Wolf" Steensen.
On the night of February 22, 2014, Mr Steensen, his partner and a friend were walking along the Esplanade after drinking at the Mooloolaba Surf Club.
Mr Steensen saw a man, Patrick, standing on the road and yelling abuse at a passing car and told him to "pull your head in dickhead".
Patrick, who had already been in a scuffle with a friend that night, took offence and knocked Mr Steensen to the ground. They wrestled briefly before being pulled off each other.
Mr Steensen walked away telling his friends he was "getting too old" for fights. But Patrick remained incensed and ran towards Mr Steensen and punched him in the head.
Mr Steensen's head hit the ground heavily - fracturing his skull and causing brain bruising and bleeding that he never recovered from.
Speaking in court on Monday Mr Steensen's mother Gloria said she had "never worried" about what sentence Patrick received but wanted him to never punch another person.
"You can't go through life treating people as punching bags," she said.
"Jesse, look closely and think of me whenever you go to throw your next punch."
In a written statement Mr Steensen's father John said he could no longer watch his beloved Richmond Tigers as they reminded him too much of times spent watching games with Bruce.
"I haven't just lost my son, I've lost my best mate," he said.
Justice Catherine Holmes said she wished more young men in Patrick's situation could hear Mrs Steensen speak.
"If you are not moved by what she said you are beyond hope," she said.
Patrick was sentenced to eight years prison with no set parole eligibility date. The court heard he is likely to be deported to his native New Zealand when he is released. - ARM NEWSDESK