Drink driving at 0.232
"THIS is exactly the type of offending that leads to fatalities on our roads.”
They were the words of magistrate Simon Young as he sentenced Glen Allan Priest, 57, to four months in prison with immediate parole on Monday for drink driving at more than four times the legal limit.
Mr Young was scathing of Priest who also has a court driving record in four different Australian states and a territory, including prison sentences in two states for high range drink driving.
"Your manner of driving was dangerous. This is a poor traffic history,” Mr Young said..
"You have not learnt any lesson it seems.
"You get absolutely rotten drunk and then decide to go and visit some mates in Dingo Beach.”
Priest, who lived in the Whitsundays, but is in the process of moving to Mackay, pleaded guilty in Proserpine Magistrates Court on Monday to charges of driving under the influence of alcohol and driving without a licence.
Prosecutor Robert Beamish told the court Proserpine Police had pulled a car over for speeding on Shute Harbour Rd at Mt Marlow on October 28. The court was told Priest pulled up behind the stopped car, and police directed him to continue driving.
However, when he did not do so and police went to speak to him they found Priest "highly intoxicated”, Mr Beamish said.
The court heard, when breath tested, Priest recorded a blood alcohol content reading of 0.232.
Police also discovered Priest did not have a current driver's licence as it had been disqualified for previous drink driving, Mr Beamish said.
Priest told police at the time that he was looking for the Dingo Beach turn-off, Mr Beamish said.
He also told police at the time he had only had four cans of heavy beer - a statement the magistrate held no regard for, or belief in.
"I do not accept you only had four beers,” Mr Young said.
Priest's solicitor, Rosemary Varley, said her client was going to Dingo Beach for the day and was staying overnight with friends.
She admitted he had traffic offending in several Australian states, but said the last one was nine or 10 years ago.
Ms Varley said she had asked her client why had had driven that day, and his answer was that "he does not know”.
"It's more than a foolish or stupid decision,” she said.
Mr Young sentenced Priest to four months in prison, with immediate parole release, for driving under the influence.
"My expectation in parole is that there will be some focus on alcohol counselling,” Mr Young said.
Priest's driver's licence was also suspended for 15 months for drink driving and a further three months for driving without a licence.