Pen­sioner told to look in the mir­ror

Pinjarra Murray Times - - CRIME WATCH -

A MAN­DURAH pen­sioner used a mir­ror to shine light into the cock­pit of a po­lice plane and caused the driver to be­come daz­zled for 30 sec­onds.

De­clan Daly (80), who ap­peared in Man­durah Mag­is­trates Court on Fri­day, pleaded guilty to caus­ing fear or alarm with a light to people in a con­veyance.

Po­lice pros­e­cu­tor Brian Suther­land said Daly was at his Man­durah home when the in­ci­dent oc­curred on April 15.

Po­lice said Daly heard a po­lice plane cir­cling above his home at 1.23pm. The po­lice plane was con­duct­ing du­ties at the time.

Daly went out­side his home with a mir­ror and held the ob­ject to­wards the light. A wit­ness recorded Daly dur­ing the in­ci­dent. Po­lice then lo­cated him and the mir­ror and he made ad­mis­sions to the charge.

Duty lawyer Claire Hay said Daly ac­cepted he knew it was a po­lice plane and the con­se­quences he caused.

How­ever, she said Daly did not ac­cept the physics of the sun re­flect­ing in the mir­ror di­rectly into the cabin.

“Why wouldn’t it?” Mag­is­trate Anne Long­den said.

Ms Hay said Daly was try­ing to send a mes­sage to the po­lice plane that what they were do­ing was “an­noy­ing”.

Ms Hay said Daly suf­fered from Miso­pho­nia, a con­di­tion where people are sen­si­tive to cer­tain sounds.

Ms Hay said Daly felt rage and panic when hear­ing the po­lice plane and he be­lieved it was cir­cling for an hour and a half.

Mag­is­trate Long­den said the of­fence was un­usual but se­ri­ous.

“The con­se­quences could’ve been cat­a­strophic and ter­ri­ble but for­tu­nately noth­ing ter­ri­ble hap­pened,” she said.

Due to Daly’s re­morse, no pre­vi­ous record, age and poor health, Mag­is­trate Long­den fined him $2000.

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