14 April 2023

Dirt bike 'idol' avoids jail for unprovoked attack at Mooseheads nightclub

| Albert McKnight
Start the conversation

Jacob Andrew Buckman, 23, leaves court on Thursday after his sentencing. Photo: Albert McKnight.

A South Coast man who considers himself an “idol” to the younger members of his dirt bike club has avoided being sent to jail for unleashing a series of blows on a fellow patron at a popular Canberra nightclub.

Closed-circuit television footage shows Jacob Andrew Buckman standing at a bar in Mooseheads on a busy morning on 9 July, 2022 before launching the unprovoked attack on the patron beside him.

The patron had just walked up to the bar to talk to his friend when Buckman told him to “f–k off”, pushed him backwards, repeatedly punched him in the face and grabbed his hair, Magistrate Jane Campbell said.

The magistrate said the patron ended up on the ground and was “knocked out pretty hard” by the unprovoked attack as he lay there for some time afterwards. He was left with a bleeding nose and cuts to his lips.

“I don’t know what caused you to turn around and suddenly unleash upon this man,” Magistrate Campbell told Buckman in the ACT Magistrates Court on Thursday (13 April).

“What we see in young men is they go out, they get full of alcohol and they engage in these random acts of violence.”

READ ALSO Courgette chef James Mussillon returned to jail over money laundering

Buckman, who lives in Batemans Bay, told the court his actions had been “unacceptable” and since the assault he had been “just trying to become a better person”.

“I’m more than disgusted about the decisions that I’ve made,” he said.

“I’m not that person and don’t want to be labelled that person.”

He said he had stopped drinking alcohol and had surrounded himself with new friends.

The 23-year-old also said he had been in a motorcycle club for dirt bikes for the past several years and as someone who was “a bit of an idol in the sport”, people did look up to him.

Toni Tu’ulakitau of Tu’ulakitau McGuire said his client regarded himself as a role model around the younger members of his club.

He argued his client, who worked as a driller, was remorseful for his conduct and had removed himself from the ACT to give himself a fresh start.

The prosecutor pointed out that the violence only ended when security and patrons intervened in the assault.

READ ALSO ‘You chose the wrong girl’: survivor blasts Mooseheads rapist at his sentencing

Magistrate Campbell said Buckman originally pleaded not guilty to two charges of assault and while he changed his pleas to guilty last December, she did not accept that he had fully taken responsibility for his actions. However, she did find he was remorseful.

She told him, “If you want to remain a mentor and idol, you need to make sure you are not drinking”.

The magistrate said due to the “remarkable steps” he had taken towards his rehabilitation, she would suspend his prison term.

Buckman was convicted on both charges and sentenced to one month’s jail, fully suspended for a 12-month good behaviour order.

Original Article published by Albert McKnight on Riotact.

Start the conversation

Daily Digest

Do you like to know what’s happening around your region? Every day the About Regional team packages up our most popular stories and sends them straight to your inbox for free. Sign-up now for trusted local news that will never be behind a paywall.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.