Tweed man escapes police by swimming across river
A self-confessed ice addict escaped police by swimming across the Tweed River and fleeing on foot into bushland, a court heard.
Daniel Caine Holland, 39, in Tweed Heads Local Court today, pleaded guilty to three charges including resist or hinder police officer in execution of duty and assault officer in execution of duty.
The court heard Holland was spotted by police about 7am on October 25, 2019 in Coolangatta.
He was wanted on an arrest warrant for failing to appear in court for assault and affray charges.
As officers approached Holland, he "nodded his head" acknowledging he was under arrest.
Holland collected his belongings, including a clear plastic bottle with alcohol in it, and started packing his bag.
When police were only a few meters away, Holland said, "F**k that" and ran towards Jack Evans Boat Harbour.
Police ran after Holland and repeatedly told him to stop but he continued running towards the harbor and told officers to "get f***d".
During the chase, police said Holland turned towards them and "grunted aggressively" and threw his plastic bottle at an officer.
Holland then dived into the harbour and swam towards Tweed River while officers followed on foot along the bank.
As he approached the rock wall that divides the harbour and the river, officers swam after him.
After Holland reached the rock wall, he climbed it and swam 400m to Fingal Head.
Officers on the land used a resident's boat and chased Holland, but Holland fled into dense bushland and the search was stopped after 30 minutes.
About 4pm the same day, police arrived at Holland's Tweed Heads address and caught him trying to flee out the front door.
Police "deemed a violent confrontation was imminent" and capsicum sprayed Holland in the face.
Defence lawyer Phil Mulherin told the court perhaps the officers were embarrassed by the ordeal and Holland got his "comeuppance" when he was pepper sprayed before his arrest.
Mr Mulherin said it wasn't his client's intention to hit officers with the plastic bottle, but rather "lighten his load" while fleeing.
Magistrate Geoff Dunlevy said Holland's offences seemed to fall below the mid-range of objective seriousness and acknowledged his time already spent in custody.
Holland was convicted and sentenced to a community corrections order with supervision for 12 months.