Repeat thug has jail time added

A VIOLENT offender involved in the stabbing of a Longford grandfather was sentenced to a further two years' jail for another assault and break-in at a Newnham hotel.

It was his third prison sentence in six months.  

Matthew Wayne Leslie, 22,  was found guilty of aggravated burglary and assault after he burgled Archers Manor in June 2011 and bashed the owner. 

 Leslie had intended to steal alcohol but when confronted by the owner, who had been in bed, he hit the man over the head with a bottle of spirits. 

``The accused could have run away. Instead he attacked the man,'' Chief Justice Ewan Crawford said in the  Supreme Court in Launceston yesterday. 

Leslie punched Allan Roark in the head as he lay on the ground and ``beat the poor man with his own baton''.

The injuries left him bedridden for weeks, unable to work and ``affected psychologically''. 

In a similar crime, just four months later, Leslie and an offsider broke into Vaun Stonehouse's Longford home. 

Mr Stonehouse, then 62, was stabbed 11 times and nearly died after he interrupted Leslie and Tyler John Mayne. 

``Most of the violence came from [Leslie's] companion, but nevertheless he assisted by hitting [Mr Stonehouse] over the head,'' Justice Crawford said. 

Leslie got a three-year jail term for his role.

In 2010 he robbed a pharmacy worker walking down the street _ punching her in the face, breaking her nose and knocking her to the ground. 

This earned the former Riverside resident two years and three months in Risdon Prison. 

His term of imprisonment, after yesterday's sentencing, is now seven years and three months. 

``The public must be protected against intruders, particularly at night, who are prepared to use violence if necessary, and in fact use it. Crimes such as these cause great fear in the community and great harm to the victims,'' Justice Crawford said. 

Leslie will be eligible for parole in December 2015 after Justice Crawford opted not to set it to the minimum term. 

Mr Roark declined to comment except to thank the emergency services workers who attended to him after the incident.