Mum given jail term and told to get off the drugs
A 40-YEAR-OLD mother who admitted to using illicit drugs since she was 15 has been handed a jail sentence and told to get her act together.
A police escort van had been driving on the highway near Postmans Ridge on August 26 when officers came upon Belinda Lee Ashwell walking with a young child on the side of the road.
When officers called to her asking if she was okay, she had told them to "f*** off", Toowoomba Magistrates Court heard.
She had then pulled the child alongside her as she crossed two lanes of the highway, almost being struck by a truck passing by, police prosecutor Catherine Nielsen told the court.
Having concerns for her and the child, police approached only for the woman to say "this is bull****" before telling police she was walking from her home at Helidon Spa to Withcott (12km) to cash in a scratch ticket, Senior Constable Nielsen said.
The police officers observed Ashwell appeared drug affected.
A police search of her Helidon Spa home two weeks prior had turned up a number of syringes and 0.1g of methylamphetamine, Snr Const. Nielsen said.
Ashwell pleaded guilty to possessing a dangerous drug, failing to properly dispose of syringes and public nuisance.
Her solicitor Codi Dalley told the court her client's children had been taken from her by the department and she was trying to get her life back in order to get her children back.
Her client instructed she had been using drugs since she was 15 but was now clean and working with the department to get her children back, she said.
Magistrate Kay Ryan noted Ashwell was on a suspended sentence for similar offending and berated her for having syringes in a home where there were children.
Ms Ryan sentenced her to four months in jail but ordered she be released on parole immediately and placed her on 12 months probation to include random testing for illicit drugs.