A Tasmania Police officer facing an assault charge over an incident in a football game told the Launceston Magistrates Court that he was protecting himself from an angry male.
Glenn Dawson has pleaded not guilty to assaulting Zachary Griffiths on July 6, 2019 during a game at Bridgenorth.
Mr Dawson, who was playing for Bracknell, gave evidence that he fell on his back after a marking contest.
READ MORE: Witness heard footy blow land, court told
"After I stumbled back I observed an angry male with a clenched fist approach me from my feet basically," he said.
"He had an angry look on his face and his right fist was clenched."
He demonstrated to Magistrate Sharon Cure that he swung his left arm across his face and swung his right arm across his chest.
"What was your purpose?," defence counsel Greg Richardson asked.
"Simply to protect my head and upper body," Mr Dawson said.
"Was it your intention to apply force?," Mr Richardson asked.
"No," Mr Dawson said.
Crown prosecutor Simon Nicholson suggested that when Mr Dawson demonstrated his actions he had a clenched fist.
"It was like a punch?," Mr Nicholson said.
"I was tensed up at the time, it was an instant reaction," Mr Dawson replied.
"I was protecting myself from being hit."
"In protecting yourself you punched him?" Mr Nicholson asked.
"I was protecting myself," Mr Dawson said.
Launceston General Hospital Director of Medical Services Peter Renshaw said hospital notes revealed that Mr Griffiths required plastic surgery after receiving a broken mandible on the left and right side of his face.
He said that he required an arch bar and a metal plate across the fracture.
The hearing has heard from a dozen officials and players from Bridgenorth and Bracknell football clubs many of whom were within 10-20 metres of the incident.
Bracknell committee member Justin Curbishley gave evidence that Mr Griffiths jumped on top of Mr Dawson in an attempt to assert dominance and pushed Mr Dawson to the head and chest area.
"Glenn's arm came up and made contact with Mr Griffiths' chin," he said.
Mr Curbishley said the fist was half-open, half-closed.
In an interview with police Mr Dawson was warned that the allegation may relate to a breach of the Tasmania Police code of conduct.
Before today's evidence Ms Cure told the two parties that her brother, Lance Cure, was a sponsor of the Bracknell Football Club through his firm Finance Brokers of Tasmania.
It was the second time the case had been moved because Magistrate Ken Stanton declared a potential conflict of interest at an earlier stage.
Mr Richardson said he had no problems with Ms Cure hearing the case.
"That's Tasmania," he said.
Prosecution and defence will make closing submissions on Wednesday afternoon.
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