Unlicensed drunk tradie jailed after wild beach drive
An extremely drunk Townsville tradie ignored pleas to slow down moments before hitting rocks and throwing his mates out the tray of his work ute.
One of the men, catapulted to the ground, sustained a compound fracture of the tibia and fibula and a horror 20cm wound where bone pierced the skin.
Dylan Lee Smillie was working on Palm Island as a contractor painter when he drove unlicensed and drunk on a mission to find firewood.
The Townsville District Court heard on September 12, 2018 Smillie and two work mates were drinking at a Palm Island pub. At 7.30pm another work mate picked up the three men and drove them back to his beach hut.
The group sat around a fire and continued drinking into the night before deciding to fetch driftwood for the fire at 12.30am.
Crown prosecutor Amanda Payne said Smillie drove the work Hilux with two of his work mates in the back tray on the beach in search of the wood.
The court heard on the way back to the hut the men pleaded with Smillie to slow down.
However, he ignored the pleas.
Smillie hit a ridge of rocks on the beach causing the car to become airborne throwing the two men from the ute tray.
Police arrested Smillie at 7am and returned a blood alcohol sample of .108 with a forensic medical officer estimating his blood alcohol concentration would have been between .181 and .361 at the time of the incident.
Smillie made full admissions to police saying he had consumed between 17 and 19 drinks over the course of the drinking session and was driving between 30 and 40km.
The 24-year-old pleaded guilty to dangerous operation of a vehicle causing death or grievous bodily harm while adversely affected by an intoxicating substance.
Defence barrister Claire Grant said Smillie had grown up in a fractured family and had learning difficulties but had never been out of employment since he left school in year 11.
Ms Grant argued Smillie had not put any innocent motorists in danger as he was driving off road and that he had struggled dealing with the incident.
Judge Gregory Lynham read out a victim impact statement to the court detailing the emotional, physical and financial stress the victim had been burdened with from his injuries.
Smillie remained composed in the dock as Judge Lynham sentenced him to three years' jail suspended after 12 months and disqualified him from driving for two years.
As Smillie was led away by a corrections officer his friend yelled out from the public gallery, 'I love you' as he turned around to wave goodbye.
Originally published as Unlicensed, drunk tradie jailed after wild beach drive