A judge considered whether or not to lock up a woman involved in a pet-related reprisal attack after the offender's "unacceptable" tardiness getting to court.
"It gave me pause," Justice Belinda Baker said on Tuesday after Kock-Kedhia Maker Makoi arrived nearly an hour late to her ACT Supreme Court sentencing.
In May, following a judge-alone trial, the judge found Makoi guilty of joint commission aggravated burglary, assault occasioning actual bodily harm and property damage.
She was found not guilty of threatening to kill.
The 29-year-old offender was found to have been involved in a multi-person burglary committed as "a reprisal for the victim's perceived role in causing the death of [Makoi's] dog".
On Tuesday, Justice Baker handed Makoi a jail sentence of just over three years and eight months, to be served by way of intensive correction order.
However, the judge told the offender she had considered whether Makoi should be afforded the opportunity to serve her term of imprisonment in the community after the woman's late appearance.
Had Makoi, who was initially meant to be sentenced on Monday, arrived any later to court on Tuesday, a warrant for her arrest could have been issued.
"You are at a point in your life where you have to make your decision about the future course of your life," the judge said.
"You need to understand the offences you committed are serious and they usually attract a significant period of full-time imprisonment."
The offending incident took place in June 2020 after Makoi's dog was found dead and the offender blamed the victim, whom she had previously been friends with.
The trial heard the following day, Makoi and three other women went to the home of the victim, who awoke to someone pinning her down and "beating her up".
The victim said Makoi struck her multiple times with a wine rack while her apartment was ransacked.
Justice Baker said "gratuitous damage" to the apartment included broken furniture, broken glass and crockery, and a damaged television.
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While police officers said they had smelled petrol in the apartment, a puddle of liquid on the floor had not been tested.
The offender was sentenced on the basis she was in "agreement" to the assault and property damage.
"Even accepting that there is doubt as to whether the offender herself physically assaulted the victim or damaged her property, I have no doubt that the offender was at the very least present and actively encouraging those who did," the judge said.
Makoi shook her head as the judge read out her charges and was was later heard in the court corridors describing herself as "the victim".
Justice Baker said the Sudanese woman had not demonstrated any remorse for her offending and still denied her involvement in the incident.
The judge also said Makoi's moral culpability was reduced due to her "challenging" upbringing in a refugee camp.
A forensic psychologist assessed Makoi as meeting the criteria for moderate personality disorder after the "significant trauma" she faced in her formative years.
"There is little wonder that [the offender] demonstrates poor interpersonal relationships, identity formation, attachment systems, reality testing and emotional regulation," the psychologist said.
Makoi's sentence factored in the 24 days she had already spent in custody.
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