Public nuisance fuelled by alcohol

THE SHEER number of public nuisance offenders to front the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court in the past week was enough to irritate magistrate Graeme Tatnell.

In one day, 21 public nuisance charges went before the court, the majority of those the result of the offenders having too much alcohol.

“I’m sort of dumbfounded at times about the behaviour of people when they drink alcohol,” he said. “Half is alcohol-related, the other half is serious crime, which is drug-related. So if there was no alcohol and no drugs I’d have very little to do.”

He told one offender: “You put yourself in a position of danger when you drink that much alcohol.”

This was certainly true for Trevor Dean McLauchlan, who was found asleep in the middle of a Urangan roundabout after drinking wine, beer and Jagermeister on December 19.

A taxi driver, who contacted police when he couldn’t wake McLauchlan, said he positioned his car so that other vehicles wouldn’t run the drunken man over. When police later woke the 25-year-old, he began swinging punches at them.

He was fined $500.

Alcohol was also the downfall of Jane Elizabeth Waterton, who was charged with two counts of public nuisance for her actions on December 9 and December 31.

On the later date, Waterton was seen to throw her phone on the ground during an argument with a man outside the Torquay Hotel.

She then swore at the police before going back into the hotel and continuing to drink. She was fined $650.



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