A tradie accused of fracturing a man's nose with a pair of gardening shears during a violent confrontation at a Shellharbour home on Thursday evening claims he was acting to protect his son, a court has heard.
The 45-year-old father, who cannot be named for legal reasons, told police his son and three friends had been riding their push bikes near the victim's house when the man asked why they were in the street, as there had been reports of recent break-ins in the neighbourhood. He told the boys to leave. The group rode off but returned a short time later, at which time the victim allegedly said to his partner "get the gun".
One of the boys yelled "he has a gun" and they rode away, returning to their respective homes.
The tradie's son disclosed the incident to his father, prompting the dad to drive to the victim's house to confront him.
The father banged on the front door of the property and allegedly yelled "it's the police, open the door or I'm coming in". The victim responded "no you're not". The dad allegedly yelled back "you gutless bastard, threatening kids".
He then allegedly tried to push the door open with a chair before smashing a pot plant through a side glass panel near the door.
Police claim the man went to the back of the house, opened an unlocked garage door and picked up a pair of pruning shears.
He then returned to the front of the home and allegedly swung the shears towards the victim through the hole in the glass panel, hitting him across the bridge of the nose.
The father then fled the location. The victim was subsequently taken to hospital for treatment.
Forensic police canvassed the scene and lifted fingerprints from inside the garage, which they will allege match those they have on file for the father.
Police spoke with the father, who initially denied attending the house.
When told about the fingerprint find, the man allegedly broke down crying and was "inconsolable, having realised the seriousness of the offences".
He allegedly told police he was only acting to "protect his son", who had been terrified about the victim's reference to having a gun.
The father was charged with impersonating a police officer and aggravated break and enter and inflicting actual bodily harm.
He was refused police bail over the weekend and fronted Wollongong Local Court on Monday, where he successfully applied for conditional bail, despite police opposing his release.
The man's lawyer, Adam Booker, said his client would agree to any bail conditions imposed by the court and could offer a substantial monetary bond to ensure his attendance at court.
Magistrate Michael Stoddart granted the man bail under a set of stringent conditions including a nighttime curfew and weekly reporting to police. He was also ordered to stay away from the victim or any witnesses likely to be called to give evidence.
The case will return to court in April.