Mudgee Local Court saw a large number of defendants facing driving charges.
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A total of 47 separate people were listed for last Wednesday charged with at least one driving offence each.
These include the truck driver charged with an accident on the Hill End Road that killed hundreds of sheep, speeding offences, a motorbike rider not wearing a helmet, and using a vehicle to menace another driver. However the majority were for drink and drug driving.
A man charged with his fifth drink driving offence will appeal the severity of his sentence, despite receiving the minimum disqualification period.
Philip Andrew Marshall, aged 49, of Thomas Clarke Place, Mudgee, was fined $500 and disqualified for three months for ‘Drive with low range Prescribed Concentration of Alcohol (PCA)’.
Magistrate Mark Shepherd said that the defendant had four previous PCA offences on his record, although these committed in the 1990s.
He also noted that Marshall had completed the Traffic Offenders Program, but said, “at his age and with his history it’s hard to know what he gained from it that he wouldn’t have learned or known before”.
The severity appeal will be heard in Dubbo District Court on November 13, 2017.
Luke Robert Hornery, aged 39, of Powells Road, Lue, was fined $1000 and disqualified for 12 months for the charge ‘Drive vehicle, illicit drug present in blood etc’.
He tested positive to methamphetamine after being stopped for random breath and drug tests in Court Street, Mudgee, at 10.25am on April 20, 2017.
Hornery admitted to police he’d used “ice” but “not today”.
He was also fined a further $100 for not securing the windows of his vehicle while unattended in Market Street at 10am that same day.
The drug driving offence was Hornery’s fifth since March 2016 and his solicitor Adam Edwards told the court he’s realised he needs help.
Magistrate Shepherd told the defendant, “good luck with your efforts [to quit using the drug] because if you don’t succeed you could end up back here”.
Bernadette Joy Edwards, aged 43, of Ilford Road, Rylstone, was fined $400 and disqualified for six months for ‘Drive with middle range PCA’.
She was stopped for a random breath test in Denison Street, Mudgee, at 2.25am on August 6, 2017, and recorded a reading of 0.090.
Edwards admitted to drinking between 7 and 10.30pm and that she’d driven from Rylstone.
Magistrate Shepherd said he was concerned about the distance she drove and that she had passengers in the vehicle.
And that Edwards’ otherwise good character is proof of how widespread PCA offences are.
“You are the sort of person that wouldn’t come before court on any other offence, except for drink driving, we get them from everywhere from all stratas of the community,” he said.
Joel Burzynski, aged 30, of Pine Close, Yarrawonga, was convicted in his absence, fined $1000 and disqualified for 12 months when he failed to appear in court for ‘Drive vehicle, illicit drug present in blood etc’.
He tested positive to methamphetamine and cannabis after being stopped for random breath and drug testing.
It was the second time in just over a month Burzynski had been charged with the offence after testing positive to driving with drugs in his system on June 6.
Adyn John Rhodes, aged 24, of Palmer Avenue, Mudgee, was fined $1200 and disqualified for six months for ‘Drive with middle range PCA’.
He returned a breath analysis of 0.148 after he was stopped for a random breath test in Church Street, Mudgee, at about 1.55am on July 2, 2017.
His solicitor, Tom Flynn, told the court that since doing the Traffic Offenders Program his client knows how long alcohol stays in his system but was still surprised that the reading was just under high range.
Magistrate Shepherd noted that Rhodes has been driving for eight years and has a previous low range offence on his record.
“Most people don’t get one drink driving on their record over many years, you’ve got two at 24-years-old,” he said.
“Don’t come before court again on another drink driving charge because at three it really gets serious.”
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