Homeless man had nowhere to go, told to move on by cops
WITH nowhere to go, Fletcher Kennedy went to sleep under the verandah of Das Neumann House.
He had tried the hospital, recreation grounds and local support services, but had no luck finding a place to sleep.
Mr Kennedy, who identified as homeless at the time, was asked to move on by police shortly after 9.30am on February 21, following complaints by Das Neumann house staff and the Lockyer Valley Regional Council.
He was told not to return to the site or within 200m of the building for 24 hours.
The Gatton Magistrates Court heard that Mr Kennedy refused to leave when police arrived.
“A male person was using the undercover veranda as a place to sleep, and was at that point refusing to leave,” Police Prosecutor Al Windsor told the court.
“Police have located the defendant there, and he has been issued with a move on direction. The direction included that he was to not attend within 200 metres of Das Neumann Haus for a period of 24 hours.”
Mr Kennedy, who represented himself in court, said “they just kept harassing me”.
I was basically homeless and that, I was just trying to find somewhere to sleep,” Kennedy said.
“I tried to sleep at the hospital, I tried to sleep at the rec grounds. I didn’t know what else I could do.”
Sgt Al Windsor appeared sympatheitc to the man’s circumstances.
“He did say he had attempted to arrange support services, but those had been unsuccessful,” he said.
“Your honour, he had nowhere else to go.”
After analysing the facts of the case, Magistrate Roger Stark suggested Kennedy take the time to secure legal representation.
“I’ll give you the option to have an adjournment to seek legal advice,” he said.
“Whether the direction was given to you lawfully is a question mark.”
Mr Kennedy refused.
“Nah, I just want to plead guilty. I just want to get it over with,” he said.
Despite the plea of guilty, Magistrate Stark chose not to issue a punishment, and let Kennedy go free without a conviction being recorded.