TEARS streamed down the face of a hospitality worker as she was sent to prison for spitting on police officers while under arrest.
Police were called to a Mount Pleasant chemist late last year and arrested Belinda Marie Thompson for public nuisance.
Thompson, who was drunk, resisted being handcuffed and hurled abuse, threatening she would "f**king spit on you c**ts".
True to her word on that occasion, Thompson repeatedly spat out at police and some landed on an officer's arm, a court was told.
After about $22 worth of stolen goods was discovered in her handbag, including a bottle opener, nose ring and earrings, Thompson was taken back to Mackay Watch-house.
When she was taken to a private room to change out of her clothes - as per standard watch-house procedure - the enraged 43-year-old again spat at officers.
"You looked at her (police officer) and said "You f**king s**t" and spat directly into her face," Judge Paul Smith said.
Some of Thompson's spittle landed on the officer's nose and cheek and she was fitted with a spit-hood, which is a restraint device used to stop spitting and biting.
Feeling slighted by her situation, Thompson yelled she was "going to Today Tonight, you're a c**t" - but her actions on November 23, 2016 landed the mum of four in prison, rather than in the national limelight.
Thompson fronted Mackay District Court on Tuesday, pleading guilty to two counts of seriously assaulting police, public nuisance, shoplifting and failing to appear.
She had no criminal history of violence, but had previously been convicted of shoplifting, contravening police and breaching fine orders.
Crown prosecutor Joshua Hanna gave the agreed facts in the court and said when Thompson was breath tested at the watch-house she registered 0.164 BAC.
Defence barrister Stephen Byrne said Thompson apologised to the officers she spat at and she did not have any blood-related infections, such as hepatitis C, which could have been transmitted.
The barrister, instructed by solicitor Rosie Varley on behalf of Fisher Dore Lawyers, added Thompson was diagnosed with bipolar disorder following her actions last year and had been medicated.
But Mr Byrne conceded there was "no excuse" for his client's behaviour, which he described as out of character, supported by several references in Thompson's favour.
It was noted Thompson had "cut down" her drinking and consulted counsellors on two occasions.
As Judge Smith summed up the case, Thompson cried softly and dabbed away tears rolling down her cheeks.
The judge said "police shouldn't have to undergo this sort of conduct" on the job and added Thompson's choice to drink on the day didn't mitigate her behaviour.
However, he took into account an early plea, cooperation after the event, Thompson's lack of violent history, her mental health at the time and the apology made to officers.
Thompson was sentenced to nine months jail in total, which will be suspended after two months.
The additional jail time will hang over Thompson's head for two years.
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