Voices in man’s head provoke random attack
A Maroochydore man who damaged a Coast property in a random attack told police the "voices" in his head made him do it.
Mitchell Edward Wheeler-Colins pleaded guilty in Maroochydore Magistrates Court on Monday to wilful damage as well as one count of contravening the direction or requirement of police, possessing dangerous drugs and failing to take reasonable precaution in respect of a syringe.
Police prosecutor James Allen said Wheeler-Colins dinted a Colorbond fence with his head in three locations on September 29, 2019.
On October 4 the 31-year-old blamed his mental illness for the behaviour and told police the voices in his mind provoked him to headbutt the fence.
"He indicated due to his mental illness he was hearing voices and wanted them to stop and he ran his head into the fence to try and make that occur," Mr Allen said.
Mr Allen said Wheeler-Colins assured police the behaviour was not directed at anyone in particular.
The victim, who was at home at the time of the offence, told police she had heard a crashing sound coming from outside her home before she photographed a man walking away from the damaged fence.
Mr Allen sought restitution for two dinted panels which had a cost of $82 each.
Mr Allen said on October 12, 2019 police searched Wheeler-Colins' home and found a small amount of the drug ice, and a used syringe.
Defence barrister David Crews said Wheeler-Colins was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, lived with a cognitive impairment and had a history of substance abuse.
Mr Crews said the defendant had "limited means" of paying restitution, but suggested a fine would be an appropriate sentence for the three charges.
He said other sentencing options were not in range for the offending.
Magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist questioned the appropriateness of a fine, given Wheeler Colins's limited funds, but ordered him to pay an $800 fine for all three offences.
A conviction was recorded.