ACT News

Man who threatened police and flipped the bird given suspended jail sentence

A man who forced a police officer to draw a gun when he threatened him with a Molotov cocktail after repeatedly flipping him "the bird" has been handed a suspended sentence of 27 months jail.

Glen Maxwell Colefax, 33, was sentenced in ACT Supreme Court on Friday morning by Justice Hilary Penfold, who described his actions as "irrational stupidity rather than rational and calculated".

Colefax had pleaded guilty to threatening to cause harm to an police officer and was charged for three other offences, including lighting a fire on a total fire ban day.

The court heard Colefax was driving his orange Daewoo on Belconnen Way on January 17 last year when he noticed an unmarked patrol car and pulled his middle finger at the officers.

After ignoring police signals to stop, Colefax then conducted an illegal U-turn and police launched a pursuit of the Hackett man who again made a lewd gesture towards the officers.

Colefax continued to swerve across both lanes of traffic before turning into a cul-de-sac and stopping his vehicle, before then confronting the officers on foot.

Justice Penfold told the court Colefax repeatedly screamed "f--- off" as he approached the officers with two containers ofincendiary flammable liquid above his head.

Constable Julian Carey told the court he saw blue smoke coming from one of the containers before drawing his gun and pointing it at Colefax, who then paused and fled.

He then discarded the containers on nearby vegetation, igniting a fire on a total fire ban day, and police abandoned their foot pursuit to extinguish the fire. 

Colefax then hid in nearby bushes for 40 minutes before being arrested and taken to Calvary Hospital suffering burns to his foot.

The court heard Colefax told nursing staff he was arrested for trying to "kill cops" and said in a police interview he had wanted to "whale on police".

During an interview with police on January 19, Colefax admitted to being on ice at the time of the offences.

Justice Penfold told the court is was "clearly a serious offence" that "reflects the important of protecting police".

She said Colefax had not demonstrated "anything that could resemble remorse" despite having spent the last seven month in drug rehabilitation programs and completing a number of parenting and anger management classes.  

Colefax was placed on a good behaviour order for the duration of his suspended jail sentence and warned any discretion could lead to imprisonment.  

Justice Penfold said Colefax had been doing well in rehabilitation and the remaining imprisonment sentence would be back-dated from his admission in August 2013.

His driver's license was also suspended for four months for dangerous driving.