A man was allegedly held against his will and forced to jump from a moving car after a man he met on Grindr became “erratic” and “paranoid”, a court has heard.
Steven Matthew Lonesborough allegedly picked up the man from his Wollongong home on October 11. He drove the man to Nowra on New South Wales south coast.
However Lonesborough, who was in court on Friday, started to become “paranoid” about the other man in the early hours of October 12, the Illawarra Star reported.
The 34-year-old’s behaviour made his lover uncomfortable and prompted him to ask for a ride home, the court was told.
Police alleged during the hour-long drive back, Lonesborough’s behaviour escalated. The other man claimed Lonesborough was convinced his GPS was a “listening device”.
He then allegedly threatened to “kill” the other man, whom he had met several times, and to crash the car.
The man alleged he asked Lonesborough on several occasions to stop the car and let him out. But Lonesborough allegedly locked him in the car for four hours.
The 34-year-old allegedly held the passenger’s seat belt so tightly against the man it left red marks on his neck.
Lonesborough is also alleged to have punched him in the lip and bit him on the hand.
Later, when Lonesborough slowed the car at a roundabout, the man claimed he jumped out and ran to a nearby home for help.
Grindr user Steven Lonesborough refused bail
Police allegedly found the man’s phone and backpack in Steven Lonesborough’s car. Investigators said they found the car abandoned at a service station.
Eventually, police located Lonesborough. The man was intoxicated and screamed “The Lord will provide the truth,” the court heard.
Lonesborough appeared in Wollongong Local Court last Friday on the charge of detaining a person with intent to gain advantage or cause actual bodily harm, the Illawarra Star reported.
Police alleged Lonesborough denied he detained and assaulted the man, and was defending himself.
According to court documents, Lonesborough first met the man on Grindr and kept up a sexual relationship after their first meeting.
A judge refused Lonesborough bail last Friday. His lawyer arguing he has mental health issues that can’t be adequately treated in custody.
He will reappear in court later in the year.
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