A famed Australian television actress has had NSW Police take out a provisional apprehended violence order (AVO) for her protection against her partner.
Former Neighbours star Jodi Gordon had Police attend her exclusive Double Bay apartment to investigate a domestic violence allegation involving her boyfriend Sebastian Blackler.
Mr Blackler is currently subject to restrictions on his behaviour due to the AVO. However, Police have announced they have suspended the investigation for the time being.
At approximately 12.30am on Friday, 27 November 2020, officers responded to an emergency call.
Neighbours had reported screaming at Ms Gordon's home, which prompted Police to attend.
They entered Jodi Gordon's unit at Wiston Gardens in Double Bay and conducted an interview with Mr Blackler.
Officers remained at the residence for several hours, before issuing the investment portfolio manager an AVO with a number of conditions.
After making inquiries, police from Eastern Suburbs Local Area Command chose to suspend the investigation at the request of the actress.
Significantly, no charges were laid against Mr Blackler. Further, it is not anticipated that any charges will be laid according to a NSW Police statement.
It appears the couple have reconciled, given that a few days after the incident, Blackler was photographed returning to the scene to meet Ms Gordon.
The AVO against Sebastian Blackler has a number of conditions beyond the standard conditions.
Under the provisional apprehended violence order, he is subject to conditions that he must not assault or threaten, stalk, harass or intimidate Gordon, or intentionally or recklessly destroy or damage any property that belongs to or is in her possession.
Mr Blackler is also prevented from approaching Ms Gordon if he has consumed any alcohol or taken illicit drugs within the last 12 hours.
Who is Jodi Gordon?
Jodi Gordon is an Australian television actress. Her most famous role was on ‘Home and Away' between 2005-2010 as Martha Mackenzie. She won a gold Logie in 2006 for most popular new female talent.
She also portrayed Elly Conway on ‘Neighbours' over the last four years.
Ms Gordon is no stranger to controversy. In 2009 Police located her hiding in the bedroom of former bikie associate Mark Judge, after her then-boyfriend Ryan Stokes reported her missing.
Mr Judge had called police for assistance because he thought armed gunmen were attempting to break into his apartment, which resulted in a heavy police response.
Gordon also has a a six-year-old daughter with former Sydney Roosters star Braith Anasta. She was married to the NRL player for a number of years.
Sebastian Blacker appears in Court
On Thursday, 3 December 2020, Mr Blackler fronted Downing Centre Local Court in relation to the AVO.
The investment portfolio's lawyer for the apprehended violence order told the court that he had attempted to negotiate a resolution with the police prosecutor and Domestic Violence Liaison Officers.
“Your honour, I had a conversation with my learned friend and tried to negotiate the AVO…Unfortunately we haven't resolved the matter,” said Mr Blackler's AVO lawyers.
Magistrate Michael Antrum adjourned the case until next week.
Apprehended Violence Orders
Apprehended Violence Orders are applied for by Police in the context of domestic violence, however, they can also arise in other contexts such as neighbour disputes.
On the first Court date, you must indicate whether you agree to the AVO being in effect for the duration of the court case on an ‘interim basis'. If you do not agree, then the Magistrate will have to make a determination as to whether an interim AVO should be in place. This will involve the giving of evidence in chief and cross-examination.
Whoever is seeking the interim AVO will have to show that it is both “necessary and appropriate in the circumstances”, pursuant to Section 22 of the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Act 2007 (NSW).
The second Court date will usually be to confirm that all parties have filed and served statements and evidence. If this has been done, the Court will adjourn your case to a defended hearing. This is also known as a “show cause hearing”.
At the final hearing, witnesses are required to attend and be cross-examined. You will need an experienced AVO lawyer to effectively cross examine the other party's witnesses. This is often very complex and difficult. There are also rules of evidence as to what questions can be asked and what evidence is admissible.
Defending an AVO?
In today's context, domestic violence charges are very common. There have been a number of recent examples of AVOs being withdrawn and/or dismissed after retaining experienced criminal defence lawyers. Having the best criminal lawyers for apprehended violence orders will go a long way towards this.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.