SIGN UP for our newsletter ✉️ :

Get the latest stories delivered straight to you

Man avoids jail sentence after 'vicious' attack in central Canberra

A man captured on CCTV footage violently beating a man in Canberra has avoided a jail sentence.

Ben Burnell, 26, was filmed punching and kicking the man around the head until he was unconcious during the attack in Civic.

A remote control CCTV camera then continued to film Burnell and a friend until police arrived.

In the ACT Magistrates Court, prosecutors described the attack, which happened in July, as a "short but sustained and very vicious attack".

Magistrate Peter Dingwell told the court the assault was towards the serious end of the offence.

"The reason he committed the offence remains a mystery," he said.

But Magistrate Dingwell said there was evidence a comment had been made about a hair style.

"It was a somewhat spur of the moment action, a disproportionate response to a jocular remark," he said.

Burnell, from Canberra, was given a 12-month good behaviour order and 80 hours of community service.

Magistrate Dingwell told the court Burnell had shown remorse because he pleaded guilty. He said Burnell's age and his past suggested prison was not appropriate.

Burnell's lawyer James Maher had previously told the court his client wanted to do youth work, and therefore needed a non-conviction order.

If not, he said, Burnell would fail a background check required for work with vulnerable people.

But Magistrate Dingwell refused to grant a non-conviction order, saying "this was a prolonged and serious assault on a defenceless man".