Tom Biviano’s mother said any sentence handed down to the man who left her son permanently disabled “will be a drop in the ocean compared to what my son goes through every day”.
Shirley Young said she was disgusted when the Court of Criminal Appeal allowed Beau Lawton to withdraw his guilty plea to recklessly causing grievous bodily harm in February.
Lawton, 22, was sentenced to six years jail in 2011 after he punched Mr Biviano who had tried to break up a street brawl in Ken Tubman Drive, Maitland, on October 31, 2009.
Six months into his sentence Lawton was released on appeal following changes to the law and the definition of reckless.
“Beau said he didn’t realise he could hurt Tom to this degree, then why throw the punch at all?” said Ms Young, who is now the full-time carer for her wheelchair-bound son.
“It’s an excuse; he needs to be accountable for his actions.”
Lawton appeared in Newcastle District Court on bail last week where he pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm, which carries a maximum prison sentence of five years.
He also pleaded guilty to a charge of affray that occurred during the same incident.
“I’m disgusted, my son’s not on bail, he’s not free to enjoy himself.
“He’s disappointed he can’t be the father he wants to be and that his parents are looking after him in their old age when it should be the other way round.
“We’re not happy at all, the justice system has let Tom down greatly and it has let us down.”
Lawton will be resentenced in July.