For most of us the weekend starts on Friday night, we come home, pat the kids, kiss the dog and start to relax.
Some may get organised for a night out with the wife, partner or mates.
There is no law against having a few cold ones before you go out (as long as you don’t drive).
Police are not against people having fun in the community including people who are out for the night having a good time in our pubs, clubs and restaurants.
So you’ve had a great night but unfortunately you may have had a little too much to drink.
No great problem, you will either wobble off with the designated driver and get home, use the wife or husband for a crutch and walk home or even get the club bus home.
All that you will have in the morning is a sore head and an urge for an egg and bacon roll.
Or will you?
Some people, and I know it’s a minority, after drinking become belligerent, quarrelsome or aggressive.
While in a licensed premises if you display any of these qualities or show signs of intoxication you will be asked to leave.
If you are asked to leave you must go immediately.
Do not stand there in front of the bouncers arguing the toss, just leave because you can be issued with a fail to quit Infringement notice that will cost you at least $550. (a magistrate can increase the penalty tenfold at court up to $5500).
If you have been asked to leave and you go to avoid the $550 fine please do not hang about outside.
If you do, you could face another $550 fine for remaining in vicinity.
You must be at least 50m from the peripheral boundaries of the premises, including the car parks.
If you leave the area and then return within six hours you could again be fined $550 for re-entering the vicinity of a licensed premise.
You cannot go back inside the licensed premise for 24 hours.
Most people are aware of this, however some people just cannot handle their liquor and after being asked to leave the premises they continue to argue.
This is when the police are called.
Police attend and are confronted by intoxicated people shouting reasons why they should be let back in or why they should remain etc.
Instead of walking away when asked, sometimes the intoxicated person (male or female) takes it out on the closest police officer he/she can find.
Starting with abuse and on occasions continuing with an assault.
The incident can escalate, resulting in someone getting arrested or further action which also results in having to go to court.
Believe me, one of the loneliest places on earth is the witness box at court.
Remember, it is your actions while in public that determines how your night goes.
It could cost the price of a meal and a couple of drinks or it could cost you much more in fines and court costs.
We are not the fun police as I have been called many times.
If we were the fun police we would be wearing a clown costume and have a sad clown face painted on our faces.
We do our job to protect you so you can go out next Friday night and beyond.
As always, in case of an emergency call 000. In non-emergencies call the Policelink on 131 444 or your local police station. To provide anonymous information call Crime Stoppers 1800 333 000. For domestic and family violence information, visit www.police.nsw.gov.au. For Shoalhaven Domestic Violence officers call 4421 9666 or 4421 9665 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Don’t forget, cops are tops.