Man on sixth drink-driving offence admits he needs help

A MAN who pleaded guilty to his sixth drink-driving offence has admitted in court that he needs help.

Grant Smith faced the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court and agreed to a period of probation, including counselling to help him stop drink-driving, after police prosecutor Senior Constable Jeanette Grigoris said it was concerning that Smith's blood alcohol readings were escalating with each offence.

Snr Const Grigoris said Smith was intercepted about 1.55am in Pialba on April 7 and returned a blood alcohol reading of 0.173, which was his highest out of his six similar offences.

The court heard Smith committed the crime because he was trying to get away from an altercation at Rumaz Niteclub.

Smith was said to be concerned for his wellbeing after being chased by three men, after he attended a buck's night at the club.

Magistrate Graeme Tatnell said Smith's traffic history was "disappointing".

Mr Tatnell sentenced Smith to 18 months probation, along with a $1000 fine and 21 months licence disqualification.

Dinner drive leaves bad taste

DRIVING to get dinner at KFC has resulted in Gregory David Nagel losing his licence in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court.

Nagel, 48, pleaded guilty to drink-driving, after he returned a blood alcohol reading of 0.097 on April 27.

The court heard Nagel had not eaten breakfast or lunch that day, and after having a few drinks after work he wanted to finally get some food.

He was on his way to KFC when intercepted by police.

Nagel was fined $600 and lost his licence for three months.

Man flips car while on drug cocktail

A MAN who crashed his car while on a cocktail of drugs has been placed on probation.

Mark James Eustance, 39, pleaded guilty in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court to driving under the influence of drugs.

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Jeanette Grigoris said Eustance crashed after swerving over Pialba-Burrum Heads Rd at Craignish, hitting a storm drain and flipping the car. A blood test at Hervey Bay Hospital revealed nine different drugs in his system, Snr Const Grigoris said.

Eustance said he was on medication for a brain tumour.

Magistrate Graeme Tatnell accepted Eustance was struggling with a serious medical condition, but said he needed to be careful not to mix legal and illicit drugs.

"You can't mix a cocktail of drugs like that," Mr Tatnell said.

Eustance lost his licence for six months and was placed on probation for 18 months, which will include drug testing.

Unblemished record now marred

A WOMAN with a previously clean traffic record has apologised in court for drink-driving.

Sheridan Gai Gilchrist pleaded guilty to driving with a blood alcohol level of 0.107 on April 27 in Pialba.

She said she deeply regretted the offence and that it was out of character.

Magistrate Graeme Tatnell agreed, noting Gilchrist's lack of traffic history.

Gilchrist was fined $600 and lost her licence for two months.

High reading surprises driver

DRINKING only light beers was not enough keep a man being more than three times the legal alcohol limit when he drove in Torquay on April 20.

Alan Bruce Elder pleaded guilty in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court to drink-driving, after he returned a reading of 0.166.

Elder said he was going to get something to eat after drinking six light beers, and said he was surprised the reading was so high.

Magistrate Graeme Tatnell noted Elder's previously good traffic history, and reduced the licence disqualification from 10 months to seven months.

Elder was also fined $1000.

Anger no excuse for drunken outburst

A MAN who reacted aggressively when intercepted by police for a breath test has learned in court it was a fight he could never win.

Mathew Scott Cockburn pleaded guilty in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court to drink-driving, after he returned a blood alcohol reading of 0.119, more than double the legal limit, in Torquay on April 28.

Police prosecutor Senior Constable Jeanette Grigoris said Cockburn was intercepted as he drove away from the Torquay Hotel about 6.45pm.

Cockburn was immediately belligerent, obnoxious and aggressive, Snr Const Grigoris said.

He told the officers they should be out catching real criminals, and that there was nothing wrong with his driving as he could handle his liquor.

Cockburn told the court the reason he reacted so badly was due to a friend of his being seriously injured in an assault earlier in the year.

Cockburn said he called police about an incident at the start of the year, but in the 45 minutes it took officers to attend the scene, one of his friends was bashed and suffered a skull fracture.

He said he was angry when he was intercepted because he thought police should be doing more than waiting near pubs to nab drink-drivers.

Magistrate Graeme Tatnell told Cockburn drink-driving was a serious offence, which causes serious injury or death to many people and the police were doing a good job looking out for it on the roads.

"You probably wouldn't have reacted that way if you were sober, would you?" Mr Tatnell asked.

"No, probably not," Cockburn replied.

Cockburn was fined $900 and lost his licence for eight months.

One month without driver's licence

LEANNE Robyn Bayley has pleaded guilty in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court to drink-driving.

The court heard Bayley returned a blood alcohol reading of 0.062 in Urangan on April 19.

She was fined $350 and lost her licence for one month.

Moving car proves costly decision

A MAN who tried to move his car to a more secure location when he was drinking at the pub has lost his licence for seven months.

Kyle Luke Greaves, 27, pleaded guilty in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court to drink-driving.

The court heard Greaves returned a blood alcohol reading of 0.151 near the Torquay Hotel on April 12.

Greaves' solicitor Andrew List said his client only drove a short distance to move his car closer to a security camera, so it would be more secure while he was at the pub.

Greaves was fined $1250 along with the disqualification.



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