WORLD champion rodeo clown Shane “Maddog” Simpson made an absolute goose of himself when he headbutted a woman at a pre-rodeo party in the township of Surat on the western Downs.
Simspon lives at Salonika Beach but is a world famous rodeo clown who holds a special visa to work as an elite, exceptional sportsman in America.
He returned to the Mackay region late last year after working for three years on the lucrative American Professional Bullriding Association circuit.
He was locked up in the Mackay watch-house for 24 hours after pleading guilty to the assault and faced losing his right to work in the USA if he had a conviction was recorded against him.
Simpson, 35, pleaded guilty in the Mackay Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday to assault causing bodily harm to Katie Richardson at Surat on March 27 this year.
Ms Richardson was at a party on the night before a local rodeo, partying with locals and people visiting from out of town, including Simpson, prosecutor Senior Constable Wayne Smith said.
Around 1.45am someone started turning the power on and off as a joke or prank.
Ms Richardson went to investigate and was headbutted by Simpson.
She suffered swelling to the bridge of her nose which bled, and two black eyes.
Other people at the party got Simpson to leave.
Solicitor Sheena Hayes, of S.W. Wallace and Wallace, said Simpson had been drinking scotch with his brother and was at the party when the lights went on and off and he intervened.
He was having an argument with the guy of was doing it when Ms Richardson got in the way.
She said Simpson was now ranked in the top five in the world for rodeo clowns.
“He’s extremely remorseful for his actions and he tells me he’s better than the type of man who’d hit a woman.”
References were tended from the senior vice president of the American Professional Bullriders Association and an official of the Australian Professional Bullriders Association.
Magistrate Damien Dwyer referred to Simpson as: “A clown by name, a clown by nature.”
After locking Simpson up for 24 hours, Mr Dwyer told him: “I think the incident has more to do with what you were drinking.
“This gratuitous, unprovoked violence will not be tolerated.
“I gave very serious consideration to sending you to prison...you went very close.
“I won’t jeopardise your career and I’ll give you one last chance. But if there is a repetition of this, you will face severe punishment.”
Simpson was ordered to do 120 hours of unpaid community service and was ordered to pay $1000 compensation to Ms Richardson. If he completes the community service, no conviction will be recorded and he should be able to keep his USA visa.
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