Updated: Feb 21
DRUG DRIVING / CARELESS DRIVING / FAIL TO LEAVE NAME AND ADDRESS
Date and location of Offence(s)
February 2020, Eltham
Heidelberg Magistrates’ Court
Our client was charged with Exceed concentration of drug (Exceed PCD), Careless driving, and Fail to leave name and address at the scene of an accident. Our client lost control of the vehicle she was driving and subsequently crashed into a fence of residential property causing substantial damage to the fence and to her car. After leaving her vehicle she briefly spoke to the owner of the property but left the scene. The police were called and found our client, spoke to her, and carried out drug testing pursuant to the Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic). Our client was questioned about the cause of the accident, and why she had left the scene. Drug testing revealed that our client had Methylamphetamine in her oral fluid.
As a consequence of this incident our client received a Charge & Summons directing her to attend the Heidelberg Magistrates’ Court to answer the following offences:
Careless driving – s. 65 of the Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic)
Exceed PCD – s. 49(1)(bb) of the Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic)
Exceed PCD – s. 49(1)(h) of the Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic)
Fail to leave name and address – s. 61(1)(c) of the Road Safety Act 1986 (Vic)
Pursuant to section 50(1E) of the Road Safety Act, a mandatory period of 6 months license disqualification applies (for the drug driving charges).
Factors relevant to client
Our client had no previous traffic or drug offences in Victoria. Early reparation for damage to the fence. Our client was otherwise cooperative with the police.
The fact that our client was 51 and had no prior drug or traffic offences was a feature that garnered significant mitigation in this case. We were able to demonstrate that the offence was very much out of character. The Court was also appraised of compelling personal circumstances that contributed to her emotional state and consequently poor judgement on the night in question. Her conduct after the offence was also noteworthy in that she compensated the owner of the property whose fence was damaged because of her actions. In all the circumstances, the Court was persuaded not to record a conviction and for all offences our client was fined $600 and received the statutory minimum of 6 months license disqualification.
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Obviously, each case turns upon its own facts and a variety of other factors including matters personal to the accused, and most relevantly the law set out and applied in the Sentencing Act 1991 (Vic). In some cases, additional aggravating facts will result in a more severe outcome. Case studies such as this one are published to inform you of the sentencing outcome that was achieved in a particular case. The case study does not constitute legal advice. It is always important to receive legal advice based upon your situation and what factors may be argued to obtain the best possible outcome.