RACHELS WARD FACES COURT AGAIN
By HELEN JACK
INTERNATIONALLY renowned actress Rachel Ward has once again helped former Lismore man Nathan Broadrick avoid going to jail.
Broadrick, 24, appeared in Sydney's Downing Centre court on Wednesday and received a six-month good behaviour bond for assault.
Ms Ward was by his side in court vouching for the young man's intention to lead a crime-free life.
In June this year, Broadrick was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm after an unprovoked attack on a man in Lismore.
He entered a guilty plea in Lismore Local Court and asked that the matter be moved to Sydney's Downing Centre Court for sentence.
It was revealed to the court Broadrick was drunk at the time of the attack. In 2004, Broadrick made headlines when he pleaded guilty in Lismore Local Court to smashing a window of Argent's Diamond Plus jewellery store in Woodlark Street, Lismore, and urinating in the doorway of the store.
During his court appearance, a letter of support from Ms Ward was read to the court, indicating her intention to guide and mentor the young man if he moved to Sydney and away from Lismore's negative influences.
The reference helped save Broadrick from a jail sentence, but ultimately earned the ire of the Lismore community for her comments that Lismore youth were caught in a cycle of drinking and unemployment.
In his closing comments at the 2004 hearing, Magistrate Nick Reimer imposed a two-year suspended sentence on Broadrick, on condition he accept and follow the guidance of Ms Ward and her actor husband Bryan Brown, as well as find full-time employment.
Mr Reimer reminded Broadrick it was his last chance and that he would be sentenced to jail if he appeared in court again.
This time Broadrick's case was moved to Sydney. According to a spokesman for the Attorney-General's Department, Broadrick has taken up residence in Birchgrove, Sydney, and was entitled to have his case moved to the Downing Centre court.
Broadrick is required to reappear next May to have his progress assessed.