Beer and keys don’t mix and drink-driving is still an issue in the Gladstone region, with many people fronting court week-in, week-out to face drink-driving charges.
Beer and keys don’t mix and drink-driving is still an issue in the Gladstone region, with many people fronting court week-in, week-out to face drink-driving charges. Simon Crase

Drink-driver caught by police

COBWEBS will be growing on a man’s driver’s licence for the next six months, and they may be adhering to his golf clubs for a while longer.

The avid golfer quit the game at his wife’s behest, given his drink-driving indiscretion and run-in with police in his front yard, the Gladstone Magistrates Court heard last week.

Russell John Hartley, 34, pleaded guilty to drink-driving and obstructing police after he recorded a blood alcohol concentration of 0.094 on March 17.

Police prosecutor Constable Troy Daubaras told the court the defendant was caught by Tannum Sands police at 4.30pm.

After being breath tested, he became agitated and walked to his golf buggy, which was behind the vehicle.

He pulled a water bottle from the cart and was warned he could not take a drink.

“The cap was removed and he refused to put the bottle back,” Const Daubaras said.

“He was restrained by officers and refused to let the bottle go.”

The defendant’s wife stepped in and he gave in.

“He was taken to the police vehicle and struggled all the way,” Const Daubaras said.

Chris Trevor and Associates defence solicitor Stacey O’Gorman said her client had won a golf game, this spurring an unexpected celebration.

“He hadn’t intended to drink,” Ms O’Gorman said.

After several attempts to contact his wife, he decided to drive home.

“Since the offence he has stopped golfing, his wife has put her foot down and told him he has to think about this,” Ms O’Gorman said.

The court heard the man was caught in his driveway and his children became upset as they saw what unfolded in the driveway.

The neighbours were soon out of their homes to spectate.

“It turned into a bit of a spectacle and he’s ashamed it got to that level,” Ms O’Gorman said.

Magistrate Damian Carroll handed down a $1500 fine for both offences, recorded a conviction and the defendant was disqualified from driving for six months.



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