Stream diversion fails
A suspected drunk driver tried to avoid being caught by police by jumping into a stream after abandoning his car. As the teenager approached a breath testing checkpoint in New Plymouth on Friday night, he swerved to the side of the road, mounted the footpath and crashed his mother’s car into a lamp post, Sergeant Pat Duffy said. ‘‘As police approached, the driver ran off into the bush, abandoning his passenger, and jumped into the nearby Huatoki Stream, submerging himself under the water in an attempt to hide,’’ Duffy said. The alleged offender didn’t last long in the water and was soon in custody after police noticed his cap floating downstream. ‘‘It was somewhat dramatic and in the end, completely pointless,’’ Duffy said. ‘‘A damaged car, now no insurance, a potential dose of hypothermia, his submerged cellphone, and for what? It was a series of dumb choices because of alcohol.’’ The teenager is due to appear in the New Plymouth District Court on May 10 facing alcohol and driving charges.