Tyrone Tuli sentenced to three years jail for Australia Day shooting in Mayfield

Newcastle courthouse.
Newcastle courthouse.

A MAYFIELD man who shot at a young couple after his mother racially abused them on Australia Day has been jailed for a maximum of three years in Newcastle District Court.

“I’ve got a bullet for you,” Tyrone Tuli, 22, told the pair before raising a black pistol and firing two shots in Hanbury Street about 1.35pm on Australia Day last year. 

Minutes earlier, Tuli’s mother had made a similar threat, telling the 21-year-old female victim: “I’ve got a bullet for you. Black slut. It’s Australia Day”. 

Tuli was on Friday jailed for a maximum of three years, with a non-parole period of 18 months after he pleaded guilty to firing a firearm in a public place, using an offensive weapon with intent to commit an indictable offence, possession of an unauthorised pistol, supplying an indictable quantity of a prohibited drug and dealing with the proceeds of crime. 

Tuli, who was also sentenced for breaching a good behaviour bond for a 2016 firearm offence, will be eligible for parole on July 30, 2019. 

The two victims and Tuli and his family had been involved in a long-running dispute that exploded into threats of violence and racial abuse on Australia Day. 

The trouble started when the female victim took a shortcut through a unit block on Hanbury Street and was confronted by Tuli’s mother and her friend. 

“I’ve got a bullet for you,” Tuli’s mother said, according to an agreed statement of facts that was tendered in court. “You black slut. It’s Australia Day.” 

The victim replied: “There’s no need for weapons, let’s have a go one on one. Who cares if it’s Australia Day, what’s your point?”

The female victim’s boyfriend, who had previously been involved in disputes with Tuli’s family and friends, appeared and tried to walk his girlfriend away from the situation, according to the agreed statement of facts.

But as they started to leave, Tuli approached from behind and said: “You f---ing dogs. I’ve got a bullet for you”.

He raised his right hand and pointed a black firearm at the couple before firing two shots, sending the pair scrambling for safety behind a box trailer. Tuli then ran back into the unit complex and, about two minutes later, was picked up in a silver Holden Commodore. 

Four males got out of the car and told the victims: “you know what happens to dogs right?” before they left.

Police were called and searched Tuli’s bedroom where they located an imitation pistol, 99 MDMA pills and $3690 in cash. 

Tuli was contacted on January 30 and told to hand himself into police. He agreed, but when he didn’t appear or answer his phone, police went to the unit in Hanbury Street the following day and arrested him.