A BENDIGO woman who punched a police officer in the face when she was asked to provide a breath test, has been convicted and fined.
Jennifer Leigh Miller, 29, was driving on Eaglehawk Road in September 27, last year when she was pulled over by police for a preliminary breath test.
The Bendigo Magistrates Court heard Miller “appeared visibly drunk and shaking” at the wheel and was driving while unlicensed.
Prosecuting, Sergeant David Somerton said Miller refused the breath test and was verbally abusive toward police, telling one officer “you’re dead” before slamming her car door on one officer’s arm.
Miller then punched a sergeant in the face and had to be restrained and handcuffed.
“She continued to kick her legs about and scream as she was held,” Sergeant Somerton said.
“She was taken back to the station but was deemed too aggressive to be interviewed at the time.”
Miller was eventually charged by police on November 11 and admitted to drinking a “considerable amount” before getting in the car.
She said the reason for drink-driving was that she wasn’t thinking and that she needed to “get out of the house”.
The court heard Miller has bipolar disorder and was in a depressed state of mind at the time due to the anniversary of her father's death.
Defence lawyer Laura Heffes said Miller was on a potent combination of alcohol and medication, which had caused her mental health to deteriorate.
She said Miller has also been battling with lung cancer and was under quite exceptional circumstances dealing with an extreme amount of hardship.
Sergeant Somerton said the level of violence had impacted on the welfare of the officers involved.
The court heard the sergeant suffered a broken nose in the attack.
Magistrate Richard Wright said police doing their job did not "have to put up with that sort of behaviour".
Magistrate Wright said he accepted Miller's life has been tough but he said the circumstances of her violent outburst made it was necessary to impose a $5,000 fine.
Miller also had her license suspended for two years.