A RECOVERING ice addict who assaulted a police officer over a bar of soap while in custody has been sentenced to a year in jail.
Amelia Eade, 39, pleaded guilty to assaulting a police officer, possessing a prohibited drug, driving disqualified and breaching three good behaviour bonds at Armidale Local Court on Monday.
Defence solicitor Elisabeth Stahlutt said Eade was aggravated on Saturday as a result of not having had a shower.
Being expected to use a piece of soap on the floor that had been used perhaps by every other person – she felt she had been treated like an animal, not like a human being.Elisabeth Stahlutt.
“To put it in her own words, she ‘reeked’,” Ms Stahlutt said.
“When she was given the opportunity to have a shower she wasn’t able to use fresh soap.
“Being expected to use a piece of soap on the floor that had been used perhaps by every other person – she felt she had been treated like an animal, not like a human being.”
The court watched CCTV footage of Eade slamming the officer into a wall. Residing with a friend before her arrest, Eade quit crystal meth cold turkey seven weeks ago.
Magistrate Michael Holmes said the hygiene issue was not an excuse for the assault. “Reading the facts the police officer had provided you with every opportunity of support and the way you rewarded him was to assault him,” Mr Holmes said. “The issue of soap I agree with you and that’s something the police need to look at. If they are going to continue keeping people in custody they should have adequate toiletries.”
For possessing a prohibited drug, Eade was convicted with no penalty. For driving disqualified, she was sentenced to three months imprisonment and disqualified for two years. For assaulting a police officer, Eade was sentenced to a year’s imprisonment with six months’ non-parole. She was sentenced to three months’ imprisonment for each of her three bond breaches. All sentences are to be served concurrently.