Roadkill Goanna

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Goanna ordered to see optometrist


A magistrate today placed a goanna on a three-month good-behaviour bond and ordered him to see an optometrist after he pleaded not guilty to one charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm on a national park ranger.

"Dave", an eight-foot-long perentie from Uluru, 440km south-west of Alice Springs, was charged after an incident two weeks ago that left park ranger Sam "Scruffy" Thompson requiring several stitches to his legs, chest and face.

Dave (pictured), a self-employed forager, vigorously contested the charges before Magistrate Brian Beak.

"It's Scruffy's own bloody fault," Dave told the court. "I was just minding my own business poking about a tourist's Esky looking for bacon and eggs when Scruffy came up and startled me.

"Scruffy's known me for a long time and he knows full well that I'm nervous by disposition and extremely short-sighted, and that when I get frightened I run up trees.

"He scared the bejaysus out of me and since I couldn't see what was going on I thought I'd better get up a tree quick-smart. And to me Scruffy looked like a blurry kind of tree.

"I'm sorry that I ventilated his face, but Scruffy knows that when he sees me coming he should lie flat on the ground so this sort of thing doesn't happen."

Outside the court, Thompson said there were no hard feelings and emphasised that it was "that bloody over-zealous new copper we've got out there" who had pressed the charges.

"I'm still a bit pissed off with Dave, though," he said. "I keep telling him to stay away from the bloody campsite. There's plenty of perfectly good birds, insects and other lizards out there that he could be eating, but he insists on pinching the tourists' food.

"He's just a lazy bastard."


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