Tourist ‘nudges’ woman with hire car
A TOURIST, who drove at a Proserpine motel worker after she told him to leave the property, has been fined $900.
Joseph Anthony Petranovic, 52, of Glenwood, NSW, pleaded guilty in Proserpine Magistrates Court on Monday to driving without due care and attention.
Prosecutor Robert Beamish told the court Petranovic drove a Rav4 hire car into the slip driveway of the Reef Gardens Motel off the Bruce Highway at 11.30am on August 5.
A worker in one of the motel rooms saw Petranovic drive in at speed and went to tell him to back up and leave, Mr Beamish said.
The court heard the woman stood in front of the vehicle and, instead of reversing, Petranovic drove forward five or 10 metres, pushing her and forcing her to move backwards.
He then left, but returned five or 10 minutes later and drove through the motel grounds at speed from the northern driveway and exiting at the southern driveway, Mr Beamish said.
He called out to the woman at that time, saying “you won’t catch us, it’s a hire car”, Mr Beamish said.
Police caught up with Petranovic at the airport and charged him.
Petranovic’s solicitor Ali Ladd said her client had been heading to the airport and realised he needed to get fuel and had thought he would turn in the driveway to drive back into the centre of town.
“He did not think it was appropriate to reverse out,” she said.
Instead, she said he “nudged” his vehicle forward so he could turn around.
“My client accepts in hindsight it wasn’t the most appropriate place to turn around,” Ms Ladd said.
She told the court the woman did not receive any injuries in the incident and that Petranovic did not have a court driving or criminal record in either Queensland or his home state of NSW.
Magistrate Ron Muirhead fined Petranovic, but did not disqualify his driver’s licence at all.