A NORTHERN Victorian man who shot and injured a woman with a semi-automatic assault rifle will not be sent to prison.
Abdul Elraoui, 71, was on Friday sentenced in the County Court to a 28-month community corrections order after he pleaded guilty to charges of intentionally causing injury, conduct endangering life, and prohibited person using a firearm.
Judge Gerard Mullaly said the offending was "inherently dangerous" but Elraoui's advanced age and ill health warranted a non-custodial sentence.
Elraoui admitted to shooting a woman at his property in Mincha, near Pyramid Hill, in the early hours of June 11, 2019.
The court heard Elraoui woke to see the woman and two men moving around outside of his property.
The 71-year-old believed he would be the victim of a burglary so he armed himself with a loaded semi-automatic assault rifle and went outside.
After the woman spotted Elraoui and called out to him, the 71-year-old shot at the light emitting from her phone. The bullet struck the woman's upper left arm near her elbow.
She dropped her phone and turned to run, but Elraoui shot at her again, striking her left back area.
The woman ran towards the two men and the car. They all jumped in the vehicle as the woman told the others she had been shot.
Elraoui followed the woman and shot at the car twice as the group sped away.
The woman needed surgery for her gunshot wounds, although the injuries were not life threatening.
Elraoui was arrested and interviewed later that day. He told police he had been a victim of numerous burglaries and thefts, and he thought the same offending was happening again.
In his sentencing remarks, Judge Mullaly said Elraoui could have killed or seriously injured someone through his use of a firearm.
"Taking the law into your own hands, no matter what has happened in the past, is always to be condemned," the judge said.
But Judge Mullaly said Elaroui's crimes were "well down the scale" of what was always considered serious offending.
The judge said the shooting was "reactive, spontaneous, and done in a frightened set of a circumstances".
Judge Mullaly said he took into account Elraoui's advanced age, his heart issues, and poor mental health.
He noted prison would be particularly burdensome for the 71-year-old.
The judge said in all of the circumstances, a community corrections order was the most appropriate sentence.
Elraoui was convicted and sentenced to a 28-month community corrections order, with conditions of supervision, judicial monitoring, and mental health treatment.
Judge Mullaly said if Elraoui did not plead guilty, he would have been jailed for two years and eight months, with a non-parole period of 18 months.
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