Police officer grabbed by neck in Bay watch house attack
IT TOOK four people to force a Scarness man to take his hands off a police officer's neck.
Casey John Borland launched a violent attack on the officer in the Hervey Bay Watch House.
He was taken there after a drunken argument with another patron at a Hervey Bay hotel.
When security asked him to leave, Borland verbally abused staff and pushed a female staff member.
He left the premises, only to try and re-enter a short time later.
Police later found Borland on foot near the pub on Boat Harbour Dr.
Borland refused to talk with police and yelled "better call the boys, I'm not going back with you, I'm going home".
Sergeant Michael Ruddiman told Hervey Bay Magistrates Court Borland was "grossly affected by alcohol".
Borland refused to be handcuffed and had to be restrained after refusing to get into the back of a police car.
At 3am the following morning, while Borland was in custody at the Hervey Bay Watch House, the fire alarm was set off.
Borland refused to listen to police officers and said "come on then, all of you fight me then".
He then rushed at a police officer and grabbed him by the neck, while four other officers tried to restrain him.
"He grabbed (the police officer) by the collar and squeezed with force near to his throat, he then refused to let go of the constable and was subsequently subdued with closed hand tactics and was forced to the watch house floor and restrained," Sgt Ruddiman said.
Borland's T-shirt was torn in the struggle and he was treated by paramedics for a cut.
Borland appeared in Hervey Bay Magistrates Court on September 19, pleading guilty to five charges including public nuisance, obstructing police and serious assault on a police officer.
Sgt Ruddiman said the incident proved "watch houses are not safe environments".
"When struggles occur in this environment a number of things can go bad very quickly, not just for police but for the people police are trying to protect in the watch house," he said.
"They are in the watch house for one reason - they are not fit at that time, to be released out in the public."
Solicitor Harry Morris said his client recognised he had acted appallingly and had handed in a written a letter of apology to the police involved.
"He was very remorseful for his actions," Mr Morris said.
"My client instructs he was head-butted by another patron at the bar and did become aggressive when approached by staff.
"In the watch house he was still heavily under the influence of alcohol, as for grabbing the officer near the neck, he was trying to hold himself up as he didn't want to be taken to the ground."
Magistrate Stephen Guttridge sentenced Borland to 12 months probation and 80 hours of unpaid community service, with convictions recorded.