‘Hoon­ing’ driver caught

Man put on 12-month pro­ba­tion for fish­tail­ing in town’s main street

Whitsunday Times - - COURT & LAW - Monique Pre­ston monique.pre­ston@whit­sun­day­times.com.au

A MAN who fish­tailed his car down the main street of Air­lie Beach in the early hours of the morn­ing while nearly twice the le­gal al­co­hol limit has been put on pro­ba­tion and lost his driver’s li­cence for 12 months.

Ay­den Ger­ard Dar­ren Froud, 22, of Man­dalay, pleaded guilty in Proser­pine Mag­is­trates Court on Mon­day to dan­ger­ous op­er­a­tion of a ve­hi­cle, driv­ing with­out a li­cence and driv­ing over the gen­eral al­co­hol limit but not over the mid­dle al­co­hol limit while not be­ing the holder of a li­cence.

Pros­e­cu­tor Robert Beamish said Froud fish­tailed his car as he drove out of a drive­way onto the main street of Air­lie Beach at 1.43am on May 20.

The court was told an on­com­ing taxi had to swerve to miss his car.

Froud swerved from side-to-side for 104 me­tres be­fore swing­ing 270 de­grees to stop with the back of the car against the con­crete wall at the Heart Ho­tel, Mr Beamish said.

A per­son sit­ting on the wall was only two me­tres away from the car when it came to a stop, and oth­ers were nearby as Froud was swerv­ing along the road.

The court was told Froud drove away from po­lice when they ar­rived on the scene.

Po­lice went to his home at 2am, where they found Froud’s car with a blown rear tyre and miss­ing its rear bumper, Mr Beamish said.

He was breath-tested at 2.32am and recorded a blood al­co­hol con­tent of 0.096.

Mr Beamish said when asked by po­lice why he fish­tailed, he told them he had blown a tyre and “the only way out was to ac­cel­er­ate”.

How­ever, Mr Beamish pointed out to the court the street was a 30km/h zone.

“Video sug­gests it was more con­sis­tent with hoon­ing,” he said.

Froud’s so­lic­i­tor, Sarah Smith, said her client had been drink­ing with friends when he saw his ex-girl­friend in a night­club.

“He was hav­ing dif­fi­culty cop­ing with the break-up,” she said.

Mrs Smith said Froud in­tended to wait for po­lice when he came to a stop near the Heart Ho­tel but peo­ple had ap­proached him and at­tempted to swing punches at him.

Mag­is­trate Si­mon Young put Froud on pro­ba­tion for 12 months, with con­di­tions to in­clude he at­tend anger man­age­ment and al­co­hol coun­selling.

He also dis­qual­i­fied him from hold­ing a driver’s li­cence for 12 months.

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