Drunk driver’s ‘appalling’ hit-and-run with elderly woman
A police prosecutor shocked at a 41-year-old driver's "absolutely appalling" head-on crash into a 78-year-old victim while nearly six times the alcohol limit, urged a court for a jail sentence after the man raced away from the scene of the accident.
Redland Bay man Robert Leslie Mead sported glowing work references yesterday when he pleaded guilty at Cleveland Magistrates Court to driving under the influence of liquor; driving without due care and attention and fail to comply with duties of driver involved with a crash.
Variously described as a "key contributor" and "very valuable employee" by his boss, Mead on March 19 tried to push a 78-year-old woman's vehicle out of the way with his own, after crashing head-on into her after a bout of hooning.
The court heard the defendant had an astonishing blood-alcohol reading of 0.283 per cent when he was witnessed spinning the wheels of his Holden utility in Redland Bay after leaving the pub.
Witnesses pointed to Mead as he raced away from a burnout at Peel Street and would soon after drive into oncoming traffic.
A police prosecutor said the man was observed driving straight at his victim's vehicle which he crashed into.
The collision did not deter the man who spun his wheels trying to drive on but was hindered by his victim's vehicle.
When Mead managed to untangle from the wreck, the court heard, he raced away only to crash shortly thereafter and come under arrest.
A police prosecutor said the seriousness of the offending and its impact on his victim was "absolutely appalling" and warranted a prison sentence of three to six months.
Magistrate Deborah Vasta said the offending seemed out of character for the man who was unrepresented at the court.
Magistrate Vasta noted his "quite good" traffic history and quoted his employer as referring to him as a "very valuable employee" and "key contributor".
Mead told the court he had no idea why he had been behind the wheel claiming to have made arrangements for a lift from his local where he had not been in "a long time".
After clarifying with the magistrate what an offered community service order might entail, Mead agreed to complete 80 hours as punishment.
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He was further disqualified from driving for six months with no fine or compensation issued.
Once he reapplies for his licence Mead will be required to have an interlocking device fitted to his vehicle.
A conviction was recorded.
Originally published as Drunk driver's 'appalling' head-on hit-and-run with elderly woman