April 19, 2012

A woman screamed abuse at police, kicked a constable in the thigh and yelled they couldn’t win “because my grandfather’s a politician”, Kingaroy Magistrates’ Court was told this afternoon.

Police Prosecutor Sgt Nick Nitschke said Karen Louise Johnson was charged with two counts of obstructing police, one count of serious assault of a police officer, being a public nuisance and contravening a police direction after an incident in the McDonald’s carpark on March 18.

Johnson pleaded guilty to all charges.

Police were called to the carpark at 1:40am for “crowd control” and observed Johnson push a man in the chest. She was given an official move-on direction but she swore at police and refused to leave.

When told she was under arrest, she allegedly struggled while being handcuffed and kicked backwards, hitting one of the officers on the upper thigh. Police then tried to handcuff her by putting her up against a wall but finally had to force her to the ground to gain control because she was still kicking violently.

Sgt Nitschke said police then had to carry her to the police vehicle, while she continued swearing loudly. At one stage she yelled they couldn’t win “because my grandfather’s a politician”.

The verbal abuse continued while she was being charged at the watchhouse.

Sgt Nitschke said as there has been actual violence to a police officer, an actual period of imprisonment should be considered by the court.

Magistrate W.A. Cridland said the facts did not paint a pretty picture indicating Johnson “was totally out of control and showing a lot of aggression” to the police.

For contravening a police direction, she was fined $350 and given three months to pay.

However the assault charge was a more serious matter and imprisonment was an option available to the court in these circumstances, Mr Cridland said.

He took into account that she was “released absolutely” on a charge earlier this year and before that her most recent court appearance was 10 years ago.

Although deterrent penalties should be imposed, he believed that a combined period of probation and community service would be suitable in this case.

Johnson was sentenced to 12 months probation and 80 hours community service. A conviction was recorded.


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