A 23-YEAR-old man has been given a six month sentence after he was caught trying to escape police custody through the ceiling of a Hervey Bay hospital toilet.
Blair Clifford Edwin Rodgers pleaded guilty in Hervey Bay District Court on Wednesday to one charge of attempting to escape lawful custody after the incident on January 12, 2016.
Crown Prosecutor Victoria Trafford-Walker told the court Rodgers was in police custody at the time for a other charges including drug and assault-related offences.
"Police saw him lying on the floor, he said he hit his head and needed an ambulance because he could not feel his feet," Ms Trafford-Walker said.
"The defendant was taken to Hervey Bay Hospital and while in hospital he told police he had an urgent need to use the toilet."
The court heard the officers removed Rodger's handcuffs before allowing him to use the bathroom.
The prosecutor said when told to "hurry up" by the officers, Rodgers told them he "usually took 45 minutes on the toilet".
"They (the police officers) then heard a loud noise and opened the door," she said.
"They saw he had dust from the ceiling panel plaster board on his shoulders, and he was trying to unscrew the plaster board."
She said his actions were "pre-meditated" and he had made up "continuous lies" throughout the evening to police.
Defence Barrister Neville Weston said Rodgers had made a very early plea, and had not managed to escape custody.
"It was not a terribly successful attempt to escape of course," Mr Weston said.
"He is the father of an eight-year-old son and has instructed me that he is trying to obtain employment to support his family as best he can."
Judge Douglas McGill said Rodgers' whole exercise was a rouse with the hope he could escape.
"Only in the difficulties you had in climbing prevented your escape," Judge McGill said.
Judge McGill handed down a six month sentence, setting the parole date for June 10 this year.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.