Sebastien and Christian Whitbread drank 20 schooners of beer, arrived drunk at Gosford station and refused to pay for a ticket, verbally abusing staff who challenged their attempt to catch a train without tickets. Senior transit officer, Andrew Schofield, then stepped in when the brothers refused to leave the station. A scuffle ensued, resulting in one of the brothers receiving a bloody lip.
The pair – described by judge Colin O’Connor as “heavily intoxicated, belligerent and abusive” – were still so aggressive when police arrived that one was threatened with the use of capsicum spray. The brothers then sued Railcorp, Mr Schofield and several other transit officers for assault and false imprisonment.
The judge, in his infinite wisdom, awarded damages of $12,000 to Christian, and $10,000 to Sebastian.
Judge Colin O’Connor has form.
i) He awarded $700,000 to a Qantas baggage handler who hurt his back lifting a windscreen that had not been labelled as heavy.
ii) He awared $21,000 to a student who hurt his thumb on a statue at the St. George TAFE, even though he acknowledged that some students had probably moved it.
iii) He sentenced Paul Butcher to a whopping five years imprisonment for paying a hitman $5,000 to drown his wife in a lake.
Read the comments section for an outpouring of emotion directed at the good judge.
Update – according to Andrew Bolt, it appears that Judge O’Connor’s days are numbered. He and his ilk are to be replaced by, err, my eight year-old son and his mates.