Man found not guilty five years after footy party fracas

AN EXTREMELY thorough jury deliberated for almost four hours in Gladstone District Court on Wednesday before they found Joshua Ryan Breslin not guilty of grievous bodily harm.

For more than five years, Mr Breslin has had to wait to be cleared by a jury of his peers, after the incident took place on July 26, 2008, at a 21st birthday at Wallabys Rugby League ground.

The court had heard two different versions of the events of that night.

The victim, Bryce Liddell, claimed he was restrained, then punched repeatedly by Mr Breslin, which resulted in him losing sight in his left eye.

However, Mr Breslin's defence barrister Tom Polley presented a very different set of circumstances.

He claimed his client was king-hit by Mr Liddell from the side, and retaliated by throwing punches as an act of self-defence.

Mr Liddell's case was hampered by inconsistencies in his story, as Casey Mikl, a witness appearing on behalf of the Crown, gave conflicting evidence to Mr Polley during cross-examination.

Mr Breslin and his friend, Dale Simpson, appeared calm when they gave evidence before the court.

The jury were "forensic" in their deliberations, asking for a number of clarifications on legal definitions, before returning the not guilty verdict just after 4pm Wednesday, leaving Mr Breslin free to go.

THE CASE

  • July 26, 2008 - fight at Wallabys Rugby League grounds
  • November 26, 2013 - Jury finds Breslin not guilty after lengthy deliberation.