Men jailed over ‘drunken irrational’ assault of Uber driver, off-duty cop
Men jailed over ‘drunken irrational’ assault of Uber driver, off-duty cop

Drunk trio threatened to rape cop’s wife, bashed him

A brave off-duty police officer who stepped in to stop three drunk men from assaulting an Uber driver soon became the target of the group, who beat him with fence palings and threatened to rape his wife.

Clontarf brothers David Alan and Laurence James Elder with Garth Anthony O'Loan, of Capalaba, flew into a "drunken irrational rage" after an afternoon drinking at a Woody Point Hotel on October 4 last year.

The Brisbane District Court was told the trio spilled out onto Oxley Avenue darting between cars forcing drivers to swerve and wreaking chaos on the road.

Prosecutor Jane Shaw said Laurence Elder, 26, then began punching an Uber passenger through an open window and the other two - who thought their friend was in trouble - began punching and kicking the passenger and the driver.


Garth O’Loan was one of three men who were jailed yesterday over the vicious assault.
Garth O’Loan was one of three men who were jailed yesterday over the vicious assault.


When a 37-year-old off duty officer, who lived across the road, stepped in and told them to back off, the trio turned their attention to him and began yelling they would kill him and "f--k his missus".

The drunk men snapped off the officer's front gate and the brothers used timber slats from his front staircase "like a baseball bat" beating the officer on the legs with such force that one of the palings broke.

Ms Shaw said the officer fought back, throwing a pot plant at David Elder, 27, knocking him unconscious and triggering the other two to rush up the staircase yelling "you're f---ed now, your missus is going to be good".

Laurence Elder and O'Loan then forced their way into the house, where the officer's partner was holding a knife to defend herself and during a struggle, O'Loan, 34, inadvertently punched her in the face.

The fight spilled out onto the street and with the help of neighbours, the trio were restrained and arrested by police officers shortly afterwards.

The trio faced Brisbane District Court yesterday where they pleaded guilty to assault occasioning bodily harm, trespassing, threatening violence, wilful damage, committing public nuisance and other summary offences.

Laurence Elder and O'Loan also pleaded guilty to entering a dwelling with intent.

Defence barristers for the men said they were all extremely embarrassed by their behaviour and had each written letters of apology to the court for their offending which was "out of character".

Barrister Claire O'Connor summed it up as an unplanned assault and a drunken event which had just "spiralled out of control".

Judge Gregory Lynham agreed that heavy drinking had fuelled the frenzied attack and said it was fortunate that nobody was more seriously injured.

The court heard the Uber passenger was the most significantly hurt and had endured a cut eye, lip and a swollen head.

O'Loan and Laurence Elder were each sentenced to three years' jail, to be suspended after 12 months.

Judge Lynham said David Elder was fortunate that he had been rendered "out of action" after being hit on the head, because he could not be sentenced for the most serious offence of entering the officer's house with intent.

David Elder was sentenced to two years' jail and will be released after serving six months behind bars.

Originally published as Drunk trio threatened to rape cop's wife, bashed him with fence palings