'Bronzing up' in police van lands Toowoomba man in jail
A TOOWOOMBA man who defecated in the back of a police van and smeared the walls and himself while being transported to the watch house has been jailed.
After a series of offences committed in Toowoomba over the Christmas break, Steven John Elder, 37, moved to Maryborough but his offending behaviour followed him.
Picked up by police outside Maryborough on the night of May 25, he was being driven 28km to the watch house when he expressed his hatred for police and yelled that he was going to "bronze up" in the van.
He had then defecated and spread the substance over himself and throughout the pod and threatened to smear one of the police officers, Toowoomba Magistrates Court heard.
In an example of what police officers are regularly confronted with, when they arrived at the watch house the officers had to manhandle Elder who had to be handcuffed.
Due to the state of the police vehicle it was off the road for some time until it could be cleaned and disinfected, the court heard.
Elder had also caused police angst when on Christmas Day in Toowoomba he had been drinking at home but became agitated to the point he smashed the screens of two television sets, a mirror, lamp, bathroom tiles, ripped off a screen door and punched a hole in the wall, all while spreading his blood throughout the home.
He had then gone next door and smashed the windscreen of a car and left a trail of blood on that car.
Police arrived and took him to Toowoomba Hospital, Elder vomiting on himself en route, and at the hospital he screamed obscenities at police and hospital staff over a 40 minute period to the point he had to be sedated, the court heard.
He appeared by video link from the prison to plead guilty to all charges arising from those offences as well as to drug driving in Toowoomba on April 16 and April 28 when he had tested positive for methylamphetamine and marijuana.
Magistrate Robbie Davies noted Elder had 13 pages of criminal history before these offences but acknowledged he had a long-standing drug problem and schizophrenia.
Mr Davies declared 55 days of pre-sentence custody as time served and sentenced Elder to 18 months in jail but ordered he be released on parole on November 24.