Man in a mouthful of trouble

A SUSPECTED thief put a plastic bag in his mouth and refused to spit it out when police confronted him by police.

That led to a struggle at an Albury shopping centre centre.

Then Andrew Raymond Danaher spat out two plastic bags — one containing with white powder residue — two crumpled foils and saliva into the face of a woman police officer.

Police were called to Myer on Thursday after Danaher was recognised by staff over an alleged theft the previous week.

Albury Local Court was told yesterday they found Danaher under a clothes rack with T-shirts in his hand.

When police spoke to him, he looked up in shock and said: “I don’t steal and you’ve got nothing on me”.

He was asked for identification, put his hand in a back pocket and refused to remove it.

Police put him on the ground to see what he was hiding and he put a plastic bag in his mouth.

Danaher refused to open his mouth and police battled for about 10 minutes to stop him swallowing evidence.

It was during the struggle that police found a syringe and two capped needles in a pocket.

Finally, Danaher spat out the contents and they hit the officer on her glasses and cheek.

Danaher, 29, of Wornes Drive, Wodonga, applied for bail in Albury court yesterday for shoplifting, resisting police and assaulting an officer without actual harm.

Police prosecutor Sgt Shannon Lewis opposed bail saying Danaher had a history of similar offences with jail terms imposed.

Magistrate Tony Murray said it was Danaher’s 10th dishonesty matter.

His first shoplifting offence was committed in 1998 and he subsequently appeared in the children’s court.

Mr Murray remanded Danaher in custody to appear next Monday.

He went to Myer on November 22 and a woman employee became suspicious about his activities.

Danaher left Myer and avoided walking through the security scanners at the David Street exit.

He returned later through the Swift Street door, bent over under a rack and was asked by the same employee what he was doing.

She asked for stolen items to be returned and he said: “Back off or I will punch you”.

There was a further threat to the woman and she backed away.