Man given 'second chance' on taxi assault

A man who inflicted severe facial injuries on a taxi driver in Brisbane's CBD has been given a "second chance" by a judge.

Trevor Ramsey Phillips, 37, of Stafford in Brisbane's north, faced the District Court on Tuesday for sentencing having earlier pleaded guilty to one count of assault occasioning bodily harm.

The crown prosecutor said Phillips was on bail for common assault against a shopping centre security guard at the time of the offending on New Year's Day in 2020.

"A person who was with (Phillips) in the taxi opportunistically stole the taxi driver's phone. (Phillips) attempted to leave the taxi at that point and there is some confusion over what happened afterwards but he then ran at the driver and punched him," the prosecutor said.

"The (driver) was in shock and felt dizzy and then he was observed in hospital where it was noted he had suffered multiple fractures to his face."

The prosecutor said she did not have a victim impact statement to present to the court but the taxi driver had to take four weeks off work to recover from a fractured sinus wall and cheekbone.

Phillips' barrister Francis Walsh said his client had drug problems at the time and had taken the taxi to George Street to get a dose of Suboxone from the chemist to treat his opioid addiction.

"He has a complicated mental health situation ... he has varyingly been diagnosed as suffering drug-induced psychosis or paranoid schizophrenia or paranoid social disorder," Mr Walsh said.

Mr Walsh said Phillips was introduced to injecting methamphetamine at age 13 by a family member, but was now abstinent from illegal drugs. He was dedicated to his work as a plasterer and now risked losing his public housing if sent to jail.

Phillips told the court that he was "doing better than I have ever done in my life and (if I go to jail) that's all going away".

Judge Leanne Clare told Phillips that he had put himself at risk of jail.

"I'm giving you a second chance. You don't get many of those, especially for violence," Judge Clare said.

"Everybody wants you to succeed, it's imperative that you do, but if you go off the rails you put the community at risk."

Phillips was sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment but was immediately ordered to be released on parole.