Driver in police car attack
A WOOLI man who played chicken with a police car on the Wooli Road at Pillar Valley last year has been placed on a good behaviour bond for two years and disqualified from driving for three years.
Craig Anthony Wood, 37, came under police notice on Friday, November 13, when a marked car was making a routine patrol of the area.
The police noted they saw a white Holden Commodore around three kilometres north of the Eight Mile Lane and that it was raining heavily at the time.
Soon after, the police saw the car cross to the wrong side of the road and drive straight at their car.
The police were forced to veer off the road onto a grassed embankment, where they turned their car around and gave chase to the car driven by Wood.
The police discovered Wood near the entrance to a farm attempting to unlock the gate.
“What are you doing mate. You nearly killed me,” one of the police said to Wood.
“What the hell are you going on about,” Wood replied.
The police noticed that Wood reeked of alcohol and attempted to breath test him.
“What the ... do you need me to blow in that for. I’m over. I’m pissed, just put me in the back of the truck,” Wood said. Back at the police station, Wood launched an attack on the police at the station, tackling one around the waist. Other police were able to wrestle him to the ground and free their colleague before placing Wood in a cell.
From his cell he continued to abuse police with a number of violent and obscene threats. A breath test at the station revealed a blood alcohol reading of 0.165, placing Wood in the high-range PCA category.
Wood appeared in Grafton Local Court on Monday facing charges of assaulting a police officer, high-range PCA, driving a vehicle in a manner dangerous and three charges of intimidating a police officer in the execution of his duty.
His solicitor, Joe Fahey, argued that his client’s case should be heard under provisions of the Mental Health Act, but the magistrate declined, declaring the crimes ‘too serious for Section 32’.
Mr Fahey said that since his arrest his client had given up drugs and alcohol through a Magistrates Early Referral Into Treatment (MERIT) counselling program.
The magistrate agreed that Wood’s MERIT report was outstanding to an extent that surprised him, given the nature and seriousness of the offences. He said Wood had behaved in a berserk manner toward police and that there were similar matters on his record in Queensland.
He hoped the sentence imposed would allow Wood’s rehabilitation to continue.