Man convicted for drunken supermarket incident

A Warrnambool man who had to be capsicum sprayed when he was drunk and abusive to police has been convicted and fined $800.

Brett Hicks, 46, of Wanstead Street, yesterday pleaded guilty in Warrnambool Magistrates Court to being drunk and disorderly in a public place, behaving in an offensive manner and resisting arrest.

On Saturday, September 14, 2012 at 2.45pm Hicks and a co-accused were at the Woolworths supermarket in east Warrnambool when they began threatening and abusing staff and patrons.

Police prosecutor Leading Senior Constable Kevin Mullins said Hicks and his offsider wanted to fight a customer and picked up a wine bottle, threatening to throw it. The incident was caught on CCTV cameras.

Hicks and the co-accused returned to Wanstead Street and yelled abuse at residents in Fleetwood Court.

Police attended and both Hicks and the other man became aggressive with police about being drunk and disorderly.

After resisting arrest both were subdued with capsicum spray and taken to the Warrnambool cells.

Leading Senior Constable Mullins said Hicks was later released but not interviewed because of his aggressive manner toward officers.

Magistrate Ann McGarvie heard via video link from Geelong Magistrates Court that Hicks had 16 pages of prior convictions and the co-accused was in jail for another matter.

Hicks’s defence counsel said he was supported in court by his son and his alcohol intake had greatly reduced since the incident.

He said Hicks maintained the co-accused was drunker and more aggressive than he was and Hicks had returned to Woolworths to apologise to one staff member.

Ms McGarvie said almost all of Hicks’s previous offending was related in some way to alcohol. She said for him to be any sort of role model to his son he needed to do something about his drinking.

Hicks was convicted and fined $800.