Pub balcony jumper 'can't remember' a thing

THE ROCKHAMPTON teen made infamous for a YouTube video that caught him jumping from the second-storey of the Heritage Hotel yesterday told a magistrate he had no idea how he even got onto the balcony.

James Zerk landed on the hotel's old ground-floor roof on August 4, causing $3900 worth of damage.

The 18-year-old pleaded guilty to wilfully damaging the roof.

But Zerk said all he remembered was consuming 1L of vodka that afternoon.

Duty solicitor Grant Ireland said Zerk's mates had told him since he was charged that they reached the hotel by taxi at 10pm and were drinking up until 1.30am, when Zerk dived off the building.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Joe Aboud said a hotel employee saw Zerk climbing onto the balcony rail and filmed him on his mobile phone.

Sgt Aboud said Zerk ran away after hotel security guards helped him off the roof.

But he left his wallet on the roof.

Mr Ireland said his client had no previous convictions.

He queried how hotel employees could let Zerk onto the premises while he was so drunk and continue serving him for more than three hours.

Magistrate Barry Cosgrove agreed, questioning whether the hotel had breached their responsible service of alcohol.

But he told Zerk drunkenness could never be used as an excuse and said Zerk could have killed himself or rendered himself a paraplegic for life.

Mr Ireland argued Zerk should not have to pay the full restitution because the hotel had replaced the damaged part of their old roof with new materials.

Instead Mr Cosgrove ordered Zerk pay $2000 restitution and fined him $100.



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