Mitta footballer fined, put on bond for assault

MITTA United footballer Daniel Hales was heavily intoxicated when he became involved in a confrontation with security staff and police at an Albury hotel five days before Christmas, a court heard yesterday.

Hales had consumed 10 schooners of beer before grabbing the manager and licensee of the New Albury Hotel, who was trying to separate those involved in a melee at about 10.20pm on December 20.

After he had grabbed the manager around the waist, police arrested Hales and handcuffed him.

He saw a friend wrestling with security officers and police.

Hales put his head down and charged about 15 metres at a woman police officer as another policeman gave chase.

The woman officer turned to see Hales bearing down on her just as the chasing officer caught him, forcing him into a fence.

He rolled into the woman officer, causing a soft tissue injury to her forearm.

Later Hales admitted to police it was a misguided attempt to help a friend who was being evicted from the hotel.

Hales, 24, of Mayfair Drive, Wodonga, pleaded guilty in Albury Local Court to charges of assault and assaulting an officer in the execution of her duty.

Solicitor Mark Cronin said Hales conceded he was well affected by alcohol.

Mr Cronin said Hales saw one of his mates pinned against a fence by the throat and responded by grabbing the manager around the waist.

Magistrate Tony Murray said the behaviour by Hales was less than impressive and such incidents were “a little bit like the flavour of the month”.

Mr Murray said the amount of alcohol consumed by Hales was no excuse.

“It may explain it, but does not excuse your behaviour,” Mr Murray said.

Hales was fined $800 on the assault charge and $500 for assaulting the officer, along with being put on a 12-month bond.