Magistrate rebukes 4 in thongs

'DISRESPECTFUL': Four defendants received a dressing down from the magistrate after turning up to court in thongs this week.
'DISRESPECTFUL': Four defendants received a dressing down from the magistrate after turning up to court in thongs this week. lovleah

DRESSING for the occasion is a lesson four people appear not to have been taught.

The four were chastised for disrespecting Proserpine Magistrates Court on Monday when they appeared wearing thongs.

Amy Omera, facing a charge of assault causing bodily harm, was first off the rank to be rebuked by Magistrate Simon Young for teaming her formal black dress with black thongs.

Her case was referred to justice mediation and adjourned until April 16.

Jointly accused Conway Beach couple Mitchell John Pearson, 26, and Rebecca Kay Magee, 23, also turned up in thongs despite having been warned at a previous court appearance.

Magistrate Simon Young was irate. "You are both in thongs today, it is disrespectful to the court,” he said.

"These two know better because I have raised it before.”

Pearson and Magee both pleaded guilty to producing dangerous drugs after police searching their home in December found a one-metre-high cannabis plant growing on their front porch nestled among mint plants.

When questioned by police Magee said an unknown person had planted the seeds as a joke at a birthday party months earlier.

Pearson corroborated her story.

Duty lawyer Rosemary Varley said they did not cultivate or nurture the plant in any way and it grew due to rainwater, though both offenders were aware of the plant.

"She (Magee) is remorseful for her actions, she was cooperative with police,” Ms Varley told the court.

"(Pearson) was cooperative with police and admitted it was a foolish decision not to remove it.”

Mr Young said he was "entirely unimpressed” the couple had continued to disrespect the court and due process by coming back to court in thongs.

"I see no evidence of this being a wake-up call - as you return in thongs showing you do not take this process seriously,” he said.

"I am concerned that with young children in the house, steps are not taken to protect them from drug exposure.''

Magee was fined $500 and no conviction was recorded. Pearson was fined $500 fine and a conviction was recorded.

Meanwhile pool cleaner James Benjamin Sayers answered "I don't own shoes” when asked why he did not do the court the courtesy of dressing appropriately.

A frustrated Mr Young said that while he did not require a full penguin suit, he did need to "know the process was being taken seriously”.

"How hard is it to get some closed-in shoes?”

The 22-year-old Sayers, of Cannonvale, pleaded guilty to drink driving after being caught on Waterson Way in Airlie Beach. He blew .06 on January 20 at about 7pm.

Mr Young told Sayers if he went about his pool cleaning duties dressed in thongs, which is dangerous under workplace health and safety laws, it reflected his causal attitude to legal obligations.

Sayers was disqualified from driving for one month and fined $500. No conviction was recorded.

Topics:  australia court law

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