POLICE drew a taser gun on former Rhinos player Jeffrey Skeen out of fear of being assaulted, Grafton Local Court heard last week.
Skeen, also known as Jeffrey Craig O'Reilly, was convicted of common assault and escaping police custody over two separate matters.
The court heard Skeen, 21, of South Grafton, who is playing for Woolgoolga this season, was yelling at a man in Prince St, Grafton about 2am on March 18.
Police said the victim of the assault was approached by Skeen and when the man turned around, Skeen punched him in the face before walking off with a woman.
Police spoke to Skeen who said: "I had to hit him he was calling me a Casino c-."
The victim then told police Skeen was the man who hit him "for no reason".
"You were lucky you only got one," Skeen said, according to police.
Police followed Skeen to the intersection of Prince and Pound Sts and told him he was under arrest and he needed to stay at that location.
He began walking off and police warned him to stop before he ran into Market Square and police gave chase.
Police said Skeen then stopped and turned to them before, fearing an assault, they drew a taser gun.
Skeen continued running but was eventually caught in Duke St where police handcuffed and arrested him.
He was placed on a two-year good behaviour bond for these offences.
In a separate matter, Skeen returned a blood alcohol content of 0.097 on April 6 after police spotted him driving north along Wharf St, South Grafton about 10.30am.
"(He) travelled through an intersection and almost collided with another car travelling in the opposite direction," police told the court.
Skeen told police he drank seven full-strength beers and an unknown number of bourbons and alcoholic slushies the night before at the Post Office Hotel, Grafton.
Magistrate David Heilpern disqualified Skeen from driving for two years and fined him $700.
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