No conviction recorded against Councillor for assault and intimidation charges

Cowra Shire Councilor Michael Nobes has been given a 12-month conditional release order with no conviction recorded at Cowra Local Court on Wednesday, August 7.

Cr Nobes (55) was before the court charged with common assault and intimidating a female taxi driver in March of this year.

Papers tendered to the court said Cr Nobes attended a local club on March 6 where he consumed an unknown amount of various drinks.

Club staff refused to serve him any more drinks at 11pm with staff noting he had become louder throughout the night and had slurred speech.

A taxi was called to take Cr Nobes home. During the trip the driver took a wrong turn with Cr Nobes swearing at the driver.

Upon arrival at his residence, Cr Nobes paid his fare and as the taxi left he struck the side of the vehicle causing the driver to stop.

He then climbed back into the taxi and demanded his money back, shoving the driver in the shoulder.

The driver initially refused but after a conversation agreed to give half back to get Cr Nobes out of the vehicle. As the driver turned to give the money back she found Cr Nobes with a clenched fist.

Cr Nobes exited the taxi and it left.

On March 8, Cr Nobes visited the taxi company to ask what had happened as he had no memory of the incident. He was informed of the incident and banned from using the service.

Cr Nobes' solicitor told the court his client was embarrassed and remorseful for his actions and asked for leniency from the court in terms of a conviction being recorded so his client could maintain his position on Council.

In sentencing, Magistrate O'Brien said the matter was disturbing as the victim had no idea what Cr Nobes may have done but agreed the offending was at the lower end of the objective scale of seriousness.

He said alcohol, as well as mental health issues caused by Cr Nobes' service in the Navy, were catalysts for him to act poorly.

Cr Nobes was also ordered to abstain from drinking alcohol for the duration of the order.