Circle sentence an alternative, but not light

CIRCLE sentencing should not be viewed as a light option by criminal offenders or the community.

That was the word from Magistrate Andrew Eckhold when Stephen Lloyd Gordon appeared in Dubbo Local Court on a charge of common assault.

The 45-year-old was arrested after an alleged domestic violence incident in Dubbo on August 11.

The solicitor representing Gordon said he had been assessed as suitable for circle sentencing.

The charge was adjourned to December 4.

The circle sentencing regime allows approved offenders to be dealt with outside the traditional courtroom setting.

The offender, their peers, the magistrate and Aboriginal elders sit in a circle for a hearing to determine a rehabilitation plan and provide advice on sentencing.

Offenders are required to face the consequences of their crime and be accountable to the community.

"Circle sentencing is serious,'' Magistrate Eckhold said.

"Sometimes offenders are sent back to court for jail sentences to be imposed.''

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