Trespassing cop impersonator lights fires, makes cuppas
A WOMAN who broke into elderly people's homes, lit fires in their bathrooms and made cups of tea, impersonated a detective during her arrest.
Wearing sunglasses and headphones, Margaret-Mary Georgina Henty McBryde then live-streamed her ride in the back of the police paddy-wagon.
The Maroochydore Magistrates Court heard a couple had only left their Noosaville townhouse for one hour on December 13 before they returned to find McBryde, 36, inside.
She had lit a small fire on the bathroom floor and stuffed their sink full of food she had taken.
"What the bloody hell are you doing? Get out of here," the 84-year-old resident demanded.
McBryde then demanded they leave, before she grabbed a set of car keys and ran off.
The court heard the 73-year-old resident of the second home told police he returned at 3.30pm, after a half-hour outing, to find the sliding door open and the strong smell of smoke upstairs.
They found McBryde was resting her feet on the guest bed, sipping a cup of soy milk reading a book.
She told the victim, "I just had a shower, I am researching our family history", before she again left on foot, leaving behind cups of tea and a cigarette.
The complex manager of the first address called police when they found McBryde hiding in the poolside area.
When police found McBryde about 4pm, she stated, "I am a plain-clothed detective from Mildura station", and cited a number. Police checks confirmed this was false.
McBryde pleaded guilty to two charges of entering a dwelling and committing an indictable offence, plus one attempt; trespass; wilful damage; possessing a drug utensil and assuming the designation of a detective.
Defence solicitor Temeka Sue-Tin told the court her client had used the drug ice to self-medicate, as she was "fearful" of mainstream medicine, but had only used cannabis in the three months leading up to her offending.
She said McBryde was "living rough" at the time, was remorseful, and accepted her behaviour would have been frightening for the owners.
Magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist ordered McBryde serve 18 months' probation.