Lawyer's drunk drive into roadworks sign in front of police
A ROCKHAMPTON criminal lawyer has been disqualified from driving after crime squad police witnessed him driving drunk into a roadworks sign last month.
Douglas John Winning, 66, pleaded guilty in Rockhampton Magistrate Court today to one count of drink driving.
He had a second charge - one count of give/offer benefit to a public officer - which a brief of evidence was ordered as that charge can only be dealt with in the district court. It was adjourned to April 17.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Allison Johnstone said officers from the Rockhampton crime squad were patrolling Frenchville at 1.05am on February 17 when they witnessed a black VW hit a roadworks sign on Dean St.
She said Winning was intercepted on Elphinstone St and officers noted his eyes were glassy and he was slurring his words.
Constable Johnstone said Winning admitted to police he had consumed up to two bottles of Bundaberg Rum that evening.
He had a blood alcohol content reading of .146.
Winning, who represented himself in court, said he started "drinking alcoholically” at the age of 14 and spent years living on the streets.
He said he had managed to be sober for quite some time but had three recent triggers - both of his parents died and a friend died.
"One of my best friends who I lived on the streets with for many years went in for a routine operation and died,” Winning said.
"I took that very hard.”
He said he had been getting taxis to acquire alcohol throughout the night, but it was the craving for nicotine that led to his "ill-considered” decision to drive to the nearby petrol station to buy a packet.
"Today, I feel somewhat of a hypocrite,” Winning said.
Winning told the court he was not seeking a work licence as he was "presently getting myself sober and do not want the temptation to drive”.
Winning was fined $800 and disqualified from driving for eight months.