A YOUNG man accused of shooting a 31-year-old associate in the chest with a rifle over a drug debt at Muswellbrook earlier this year has been granted bail in the NSW Supreme Court.
Dallas Kimber, 20, has been behind bars since being charged with discharging a firearm and intending to cause grievous bodily harm after he allegedly shot a man in Anzac Parade about 6.45pm on June 27.
The man was taken to John Hunter Hospital in a serious condition but has since been released.
Mr Kimber appeared in NSW Supreme Court on Thursday via audio visual link from Mid North Coast Correctional Centre to apply for bail after making an unsuccessful bid for bail in Singleton Local Court last week.
Solicitor Gaston Gration said Mr Kimber could be granted conditional bail based on a number of factors, including what he said were weaknesses in the prosecution case and the delay in Mr Kimber getting a trial date in Newcastle District Court until late 2023 or early 2024.
Ultimately, Justice Christine Adamson agreed, granting Mr Kimber bail on a number of strict conditions, including that he live away from the Muswellbrook area, report to police daily and abide by a curfew.
Justice Adamson said there was a real issue as to whether the alleged victim could have identified Mr Kimber as the gunman, given he was under the influence of drugs and the street was in complete darkness at the time of the shooting.
Justice Adamson also pointed to issues around the alleged victim's involvement in the "drug world" and his alleged "willingness to lie for drugs".
She said those issues would be best determined during a trial but found any risks Mr Kimber posed in the meantime could be mitigated by strict conditions.
He will next appear in Newcastle Local Court in December.