Funeral booze up landed man in jail

MARK Lappin got on the grog at a family funeral in Chiltern.

Several hours later he was lying on the ground trying to avoid arrest by attempting to elbow a policeman in the face.

Yesterday Lappin, a carpenter, paid the price for his drunken afternoon when he was ordered to pay $1000 into a court fund on a charge of resisting police.

He was also placed on a 12-month good behaviour bond — without conviction — after pleading guilty in Wodonga Magistrates Court.

Lappin 30, of Murray Place, Bellbridge, represented himself.

The court was told how Rutherglen police were called to an incident in Dickson Court, Chiltern, on the night of February 7 last year.

The Rutherglen officer who turned out then requested assistance to help deal with two drunk men, one of them Lappin.

Two officers from the Wodonga traffic management unit arrived at 10.10pm.

Police said Lappin and his drinking partner initially hid behind bushes at the front of a house.

When questioned, Lappin gave a false name of “John Fibbs”.

Lappin — who was unsteady on his feet and had slurred speech — began to pace about and become agitated after he was asked for identification.

He decided to flee but his sprint down Barkly Street ended when he ran straight into a letterbox.

Lappin fell face first to the ground and tried to elbow a police officer in the face as he attempted to arrest him.

He was handcuffed after a brief struggle.

Magistrate John O’Callaghan was told Lappin spent four hours sobering up in the Wodonga police cells.

Lappin said he could not remember trying to hit the officer.

“I went to a funeral all day so that’s why I was maybe more intoxicated than I normally am,” he said.

Mr O’Callaghan said the attempted assault was the “worst part” of what Lappin did.