Father spits at parking officer writing caution
In a “despicable act”, a father spat at a parking officer in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Police prosecutor Phillip Stephens told a court Kane Scott David Brook, 24, was on a date at the Point Cartwright lookout on May 5 when he thought a parking officer was writing him a ticket.
The Sunshine Coast Council parking officer was only writing caution warnings for two illegally parked cars at 2.30pm.
“The victim has heard a male person yelling out and looked in the direction of where the voice was coming from,” Sergeant Stephens said.
“The victim has observed the defendant and another person sitting at a nearby table.”
The court heard the victim then saw Brook approaching him in an aggressive manner.
“The defendant has then started arguing with the victim regarding the way in which the motor vehicles were parked,” Sgt Stephens said.
The court heard the victim began to feel unsafe and started to take photos of Brook’s licence plate.
“The defendant has blocked the registration plate and has given the victim the middle finger,” Sgt Stephens said.
“The victim has then turned to walk back to his motor vehicle which was parked nearby.
“Whilst walking back, the victim has turned to take a photograph of the front number plate of that vehicle.
“The defendant has again blocked the number plate before spitting at the victim twice.”
The court heard Brook was about 3m away from the victim at the time of spitting.
Sgt Stephens said the victim was concerned about the spitting as it was in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and reported it to the police.
The victim showed police footage from his body worn camera which showed Brook’s head pointed directly at him while spitting.
Brook pleaded guilty in Caloundra Magistrates Court on Wednesday to serious assault of a public officer.
The court heard Brook had history of similar offences.
“It’s clear through the defendant’s history, one could infer he has a problem with authority,” Sgt Stephens said.
“The victim was merely writing a caution to the defendant and the defendant has then assumed other circumstances.”
Sgt Stephens said it was abhorrent behaviour and if the spit had landed on the victim, he would have suggested a jail term.
Duty lawyer Donna Hanslow-Hastie said leading up to the incident Brook’s partner and children had left him and he was in a bad place.
“He tells me they were his life so he wasn’t in a good frame of mind at all,” she said.
The court heard Brook at no stage aimed to hit the officer.
“He acknowledges it was an entirely inappropriate way to act,” Ms Hanslow-Hastie said.
“He’s embarrassed and he’s remorseful for his behaviour.”
Magistrate Graham Hillan said it was clear Brook had issues with officials.
“It is despicable for anyone to spit at anyone,” he said.
Mr Hillan said he needed to take into account that the spitting happened at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when people would have been on edge.
“Here we have a young fellow like you spitting at people, not a very good situation,” he said.
“I can tell you if that spittle reached and hit the victim you’d be packing your bags today.
“It is a despicable act what you’ve done and considering the officer was just going to write you a caution and he got that for his troubles.”
Brook was fined $1500 and a conviction was recorded.