Prisoner flips the bird at beak in Toowoomba court
A MAN who appeared to give "the bird" to a magistrate as he was led from Toowoomba Magistrates Court to the watch house by two police officers will be brought back into court today for sentencing.
Matthew Anthony Banner appeared in court to be sentenced on 11 charges to which he had pleaded guilty at a July appearance before the same court but the self-represented 33-year-old said he wanted to vacate his pleas of guilty on about seven of the charges.
Magistrate Robbie Davies told Banner he had entered pleas of guilty to all charges and when asked if he had entered those pleas of his own free will he had answered "yes".
Mr Davies said the onus was on the defendant to show that a miscarriage of justice would occur should his pleas of guilty not be vacated.
"You have a history of delaying matters," Mr Davies said in reference to Banner's repeated adjournments of his charges.
Banner claimed he had been under duress when he entered his pleas of guilty because it had been cold in the watch house and that staff wouldn't give him more blankets and that he had not been afforded a phone call.
Mr Davies found he had not shown cause and told Banner that the pleas of guilty would stand and would proceed to sentence.
Having repeatedly interjected throughout the proceedings, Banner was warned that if he didn't behave and show respect for the court he would be taken to the watch house with his sentence to continue in his absence.
Before police prosecutor Julia Wheaton could convey the facts to the court, Banner had protested that he be taken back to the watch house as it was "no use me being here".
Senior Constable Wheaton told the court Banner had on Christmas Day thrown a dead rat at the six-year-old son of his girlfriend's ex-partner who confronted him.
Banner had then twice thrown the dead rat at force into the man's face.
Later arrested and held in the watch house, Banner had blocked his cell's toilet and sink with toilet paper which eventually flooded the cell and then he had pushed a constable in the chest as he was being moved to another cell.
He also caused a commotion at the Hume St police station front counter on April 18.
He had then failed to appear in court three times on the charges and he had also breached his bail conditions.
Mr Davies said he would adjourn sentence until today when Banner would be given another chance to submit on sentence "after he has calmed down" and remanded him in custody.