Couple drops in uninvited to Governor's house
BUNDABERG man Paul Thomas Donnelly was not on the official guest list when he dropped in to Government House unannounced after midnight.
Donnelly and his girlfriend, co-accused Karmara Ivy Rose Dodd, found themselves roaming the estate grounds of Brisbane's historic Fernberg at 2am after bailing out on the driver of a stolen car during a police pursuit.
The couple was caught by security guards and charged with trespass.
Bundaberg Magistrates Court was told 40-year-old Donnelly was a passenger in a stolen Mazda CX5 that carried rego plates stolen off another vehicle at Rockhampton -more than 600kmh north of the official residence of governor Paul de Jersey.
Donnelly appeared in custody and pleaded guilty to trespassing at Fernberg at 2am on March 7, unlawful use of a motor vehicle and some minor offences.
Police prosecutor Tina Bland said the CX5 was reported stolen by its owner after returning from overseas in late February.
At 1.25am on March 7 police in Brisbane saw the vehicle and checks revealed its plates were stolen.
Despite using sirens and flashing lights, the CX5 driver failed to stop and drove the wrong way down a one-way street.
Snr Cnst Bland said police received a call 35 minutes later to attend Fernberg where security had seen intruders on the grounds.
Officers found Donnelly and Dodd.
Snr Cnst Bland said security officers saw a Mazda CX5 being driven past 10 minutes before seeing the pair in the grounds. Police found it parked nearby.
She said Donnelly had earlier received a three-month suspended jail term for assaulting and obstructing police and public nuisance.
Defence lawyer Mat Maloy said Donnelly was a father of six who'd previously worked in forestry at Mundubbera.
Donnelly had been diagnosed with anxiety and had an alcohol issue.
"He instructs he was not involved in the motor vehicle being stolen. He and she (Dodd) were offered a lift,” Mr Maloy said.
"He accepts that after getting in he became aware that it was not lawfully in that person's care.
"The driver sped away from police while they were in the car and when he stopped they left.
"They crossed over a fence and Mr Donnelly did not realise where he was, then found out they were in Government House when security came across them.”
Magistrate Neil Lavaring sentenced Donnelly to two months in jail for the unlawful use of the motor vehicle to be added to the three-month suspended sentence he activated.
He will be eligible to apply for parole from February 18.
Dodd appeared briefly on trespass, unlawful use of a motor vehicle and other charges.
She did not formally enter pleas but lawyer Gavin James set her matters down for sentence in February.