Timothy Mulherin in Mary St after being dealt with in Gympie District Court this week.
Timothy Mulherin in Mary St after being dealt with in Gympie District Court this week. Arthur Gorrie

Ex-Navy diver holds hammer against man's throat while on ice

A FORMER elite Australian Navy officer's life unravelled during an ice-fuelled period which included armed violence at Cooloola Cove two years ago, Gympie District Court was told this week.

But that was only the tip of the iceberg for a man already on parole for drug and burglary offences that had already cost him three months in jail on remand.

Judge Glen Cash said this was balanced by a favourable parole report noting Timothy Mulherin's efforts to curb his addiction.

Mulherin, 48, pleaded guilty to armed assault with bodily harm and wilful damage, on the same day in December 2017.

His barrister Simone Bain said Mulherin recognised he had been quick-tempered and over-reactive during his time taking ice.

Judge Cash told Mulherin the assault victim was a man in his 40s who had "some difficulties" with his daughter, who was in a relationship with Mulherin.

The man arrived home, found Mulherin's car in the driveway and thought he saw an ice pipe in the vehicle, as his daughter put things into it.

He ordered Mulherin off the property. Mulherin swore at him, pushed him over and held a lump hammer against his throat, causing the man to suffer some injuries as he struggled to breathe.

Mulherin then hit the man's car door with the hammer, causing about $1400 damage.

The judge said Mulherin had earlier this year been convicted of drug and burglary offences, after spending three months in jail on remand.

"The background seems to be that you were using the drug ice quite heavily," the judge said.

"This is yet another illustration of just how dangerous that drug is, how people of mature years and good backgrounds start smoking the drug and within a fairly short time find their lives destroyed and end up in jail.

"When you were 19, you joined the navy and served some seven years, including as a clearance diver."

Mulherin had then left the navy and become an engineering contractor, before falling into drug addiction.

Judge Cash sentenced Mulherin to 12 months jail, with immediate parole and drug testing.