Pair contest drug allegations

A DETECTIVE accidentally deployed capsicum spray onto his colleagues while they were trying to grab hold of an accused man, the Launceston Magistrates Court heard today.

Police officers gave evidence for the Crown in the preliminary proceedings appearance of co-accused Luke James Reader and Christina Vernessa Watson.

The pair are contesting allegations of drug trafficking.

The allegations date from February 2 this year, when police arrived at a unit in Alma Street, Youngtown.

Detective Sergeant Mel Groves said she visited the address with colleagues Detective Sergeant Paul Turner and Detective Constable Todd Apted.

She said the purpose of visiting the unit was to speak to Ms Watson.

Sergeant Groves said she knocked on the door, but there was no response, then one of her colleagues said, "Reader is here".

She told the court that she saw Constable Apted struggling with Mr Reader in the backyard of the unit.

Sergeant Groves said that Mr Reader was on the shed roof and she attempted to get a hold of him, but only managed to grab one of Mr Reader's socks, which fell off.

She said that Sergeant Turner appeared and deployed capsicum spray, which reached her and Constable Apted.

She said Constable Apted was "heavily affected" by the spray and she put water onto his face from a garden hose next-door.

Three further police officers also gave evidence for the Crown today.

The matter will return to the Launceston Supreme Court on October 13 at 10am.