Our client was charged with Exceed Prescribed Concentration of Alcohol 49(1)(B) and 49(1)(F). He also faced an additional charge for driving whilst disqualified. The circumstances surrounding these offences were not favourable. He had already been previously sentenced 3 times for drink driving and was disqualified from driving the last time he was sentenced. Unfortunately, these latest offences occurred within 4 months from the last time he was sentenced.
A prison term was a likely penalty considering that it was our client’s 4th drink driving offence and was further committed whilst he was disqualified from driving.
We represented the client at the Ballarat Magistrates’ Court.
Our client acknowledged during our conference with him that he suffers from alcohol abuse and social phobia. Initially, however, he refused treatment despite recognising these issues during our discussions.
With the help of a family member, we managed to convince the client that treatment will greatly benefit his well-being – personally and legally. He finally sought help. And so when the time for his plea hearing came, our client had already seen his GP, been medicated, is continually undergoing counselling with his GP and psychiatrist, and was referred to a psychologist. His drinking habits also proved to have decreased for the first time in years. This clearly showed the court our client’s strong prospect of rehabilitation. They were strong grounds for us to submit to the court that a Community Corrections Order (CCO) would be more appropriate instead of a prison term.
The magistrate ultimately sentenced our client to a 12-month CCO with a licence disqualification of 26 months. Given the circumstances of the offending, this was an excellent result.