Police found a canister in the back seat of a Queensland woman's car which was used to consume nitrous oxide capsules.
Police found a canister in the back seat of a Queensland woman's car which was used to consume nitrous oxide capsules. Traffic and Highway Patrol

NO LAUGHING MATTER: Pursuit lands nang chucker in jail

A 36-YEAR-old woman who threw nitrous oxide bulbs at police during a 100km pursuit, has been sent to jail.

Mischa Rose, from Brisbane, fronted Grafton Local Court for sentencing after pleading guilty to several driving charges, including police pursuit, driving in a dangerous manner, driving under the influence of drugs, as well as drug possession and throwing objects likely to cause damage and recklessly damaging property.

The court heard that on December 20 Rose had led police on a 100km chase from Bangalow that ended on road spikes on the Pacific Highway near Ulmarra.

In court defence solicitor Greg Coombes said while the offences were serious, at least the aggravating factor of high speeds were not involved.

"This was not a case of some going 170km/h to 180km/h," he said. "According to the police facts the speed was rarely above 70km/h to 80km/h."

Mr Coombes described his client as a woman who had "been there and done that".

"The experiences in her life are worthy of a novel," he said.

Yesterday magistrate Karen Stafford added a jail term to those experiences.

Mr Coombes told the court his client's problems stemmed from problems treating a hip injury during her childhood.

"What my client has seen and done could be largely put down to bringing back what happened to her from around the age of 12," he said.

"Because of how doctors treated her, she had developed a fear of doctors, hospitals and the medical system.

"It has set her on a path of self medicating which has led to her spending from one to six weeks at a time in the at Currumbin Clinic."

Despite her mental health issues, Mr Coombes said his client, who had completed a sports science degree, had excellent prospects of rehabilitation with the right care.

"If she was receiving more than the one Prozac tablet she receives while she's inside now, she's going to do a lot better," he said.

He said the accused's parents, who were in court, offered to buy a property in NSW for their daughter if the magistrate ordered an intensive corrections order. But Ms Stafford was against him, saying the dangers of the police pursuit Rose exposed the public to made a jail sentence necessary.

"In your case it's less a case of general deterrence and more of protecting the public from you," she said.

In her sentencing Ms Stafford gave Rose the full 25 per cent discount for her early guilty pleas and a further dispensation of a reduced non-parole period, in recognition of her good criminal record, her mental health problems, family support and prospects for rehabilitation.

She sentenced Rose to 18 months' jail with a non-parole period of four months for the police pursuit and disqualified her from driving for three years. On the dangerous driving and drive under the influence charges she was sentenced to seven months jail, with three months non-parole.

She was also given 12 months jail for the damage to the police vehicle, again with a four month non-parole period.

Ms Stafford said she had applied a stiffer sentence for the damage to the car because the damage occurred during a police pursuit.



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