At 80, his chances of getting away from police were limited.
At 80, his chances of getting away from police were limited. Robyne Cuerel

80-year-old drink driver tries to do a runner on cops

AN 80-YEAR-OLD drink driver who tried to do a runner on police only to be quickly nabbed, told officers he had a prostate problem and was rushing to the toilet.

Police tipped off to a possible drink-driver had waited outside Allan Rutherford Stewart's Withcott home about 4.45pm, May 11, Toowoomba Magistrates Court heard.

Despite warning lights directing him to pull over, Stewart had sped past the officers and into his Shorelands Drive driveway and into his garage.

Police pulled in behind him but, despite their calls to stop, Stewart ran toward the house only to be caught in his front yard, police prosecutor Sergeant Natalie Bugden told the court.

He blew a breath/alcohol reading of 0.143 and checks of his driving record found he was subject to a court ordered driving disqualification at the time.

Sgt Bugden said the 80-year-old's driving history was "littered with drink-driving offences" dating back to the 1980s.

The octogenarian pleaded guilty to all three offences.

His solicitor Shane MacDonald told the court his client instructed he had been working on a platform at height earlier that day and had fallen to the concrete.

He had struggled to call an ambulance so decided to drive himself to the medical centre up the road.

When he returned the police were there and his client instructed he had run past the officers because he had a prostate problem and needed to use the bathroom, Mr MacDonald submitted.

His client, a property developer, had properties to which he regularly travelled but would now have to hire a driver.

Due to the lengthy disqualification period his client was facing and his age, it was unlikely he would ever get his licence back, Mr MacDonald said.

Magistrate Catherine Pirie said one would think in the circumstances Stewart would have called an ambulance but Stewart told the court he had trouble working his mobile phone.

Ms Pirie said, ordinarily, she would look at a period of probation.

"(But) probation for a man your age probably wouldn't achieve much," she told him.

Stewart was fined $2000 and disqualified from holding or obtaining a driver's licence for 30 months.
 



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