Whitsunday man’s odd wake-up call leads to assault charge
A Whitsunday man wound up charged with assault after a bizarre incident involving a water bottle and a missing car.
Paul Kevin Bartlett faced Proserpine Magistrates Court this week to plead guilty to common assault.
Lawyer Ashley Reynolds told the court Bartlett had been friends with the 22-year-old victim but claimed the woman drove off in his car when the pair went to get petrol.
Ms Reynolds said Bartlett had reported the missing car to police, but the vehicle and the belongings inside it were yet to be returned.
When the 42-year-old man found out the woman was sleeping at a mutual friend's place, he went there in December to ask her for his property back.
The court heard he found the woman sleeping on a couch and tapped her on the head with a water bottle to wake her up.
Police prosecutor Sergeant Emma Myors told the court the woman woke up shocked and "experiencing pain".
He may have intended to find out about his lost property, but Bartlett instead ended up with an assault charge.
Ms Reynolds told the court the circumstances of the case were unusual.
"He accepts he touched her without permission with the bottle," she said.
The court heard the Hamilton Plains man was serving out a probation order placed on him in Tasmania, but no action was being taken against the order.
Ms Reynolds said Bartlett had two children in Tasmania and worked full-time as the manager of Airlie Cutz.
Magistrate James Morton agreed the circumstances were "very, very unusual".
"You lay down with dogs, you catch fleas," Mr Morton said.
"Watch who you hang out with, Sir."
Bartlett was fined $100 and a conviction was recorded.