Firies called out to Gladstone home, find drunk man cooking

FILE SHOT: emergency services Queensland fire and rescue department. Photo: Zach Hogg / NewsMail
FILE SHOT: emergency services Queensland fire and rescue department. Photo: Zach Hogg / NewsMail Zach Hogg BUN220714FAR3

SWAYING back and forth a Gladstone man told the magistrate he was just "hungover" from the night before.

But the same man was busted walking out of a Gladstone bottl-o with a carton of Coronas over his shoulder without paying.

Police were able to identify Darrell Kevin Melville through CCTV footage.

Melville pleaded guilty at the Gladstone Magistrates Court to two counts including entering a premises and committing an indictable offence and producing dangerous drugs.

On February 28 Melville walked into the Grand Hotel bottl-o and saw that there was no staff serving.

He grabbed the carton of beer worth $51 and walked out.

The court was told staff at the hotel heard the buzzer of the door as it opened but Melville had taken off before anyone got there.

A few months later in September, emergency services; including the police and firies, were called to a Gladstone address after reports of a burning smell and smoke coming from inside.

When they got there they were greeted by Melville, who was drunk and trying to cook food.

A search of his home located a 30cm cannabis plant.

He told police the plant was actually his son's, but admitted he had been caring for it.

The 39-year-old only recently moved to Gladstone to be with his children, defence lawyer Rio Ramos said.

However, there was some issues between his and his son, she said.

Ms Ramos said her client was unemployed but volunteered his time helping the homeless in Gladstone.

Gladstone Magistrate Melanie Ho said the man had a concerning criminal history and since she had been on the bar, had sentenced the man five times.

"Even the fire brigade had to be called out for you ... It's obvious you are having trouble with alcohol," she said.

"You are on the brink and you seem affected today, have you had any alcohol?" she asked.

Melville said he had been drinking the night before and was just hungover.

"Well obviously you are not coping," Ms Ho said.

She recommended him to get involved with community support groups and programs to get his life back on track.

He was sentenced to complete 100 hours of community service and pay restitution to the Grand Hotel.

A conviction was recorded.

Topics:  gladstonecourt

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