Driver crashes after drinking 1L bourbon in half hour
Drowning his sorrows in a litre bottle of bourbon ended badly for one man who crashed his car and was found slumped over the wheel.
Nicholas Luke Sullivan, 30, pleaded guilty by telephone in Caloundra Magistrates Court on Tuesday to failure to provide a specimen of breath.
Police prosecutor Phillip Stephens told the court police received a call from a member of the public saying he had heard a crashing noise outside his house on Currimundi Rd, Currimundi, on May 16 at 7.55pm.
"On further investigation he observed a dark-coloured sedan had mounted the gutter and was stopped half on the road and half on the footpath," Sgt Stephens said.
The court heard Sullivan was slumped over the steering wheel and unresponsive.
"The witness recorded this on his mobile phone.
"The witness momentarily left the vehicle to phone triple-0 and when he returned the driver had left the vehicle in an unknown direction."
The court heard police found Sullivan in the front yard of a nearby house very intoxicated.
Police then asked Sullivan to provide a specimen of breath, which he refused, saying he had not been the one driving the car.
The court heard Sullivan then agreed to provide a specimen of breath at the watch-house to assist police with monitoring his health.
This returned a reading of 0.222.
"He also admitted to consuming about 14 drinks of bourbon earlier that evening," Sgt Stephens said.
"Police also attended the defendant's residence at Currimundi and spoke to his sister who stated he had consumed a large amount of Wild Turkey before leaving.
"Police also discovered a short distance away from the defendant's residence he had mounted the traffic island in the middle of Buderim St, as they located a part of the defendant's vehicle."
Sullivan's lawyer, Lucy Ferguson, told the court Sullivan now lived in his Melbourne with his father and stepmum.
"At the time of the incident, my client instructs he had split up with his partner of six years and was essentially homeless," she said.
"At the time my client was feeling sorry for himself and got into the car with the intention of drowning his sorrows with a bottle of bourbon.
"He consumed approximately one litre of bourbon in a short period of time - between 30 to 40 minutes."
The court heard Sullivan moved to Melbourne as he would have a stronger support network there and permanent housing.
"He's recognised that he has an alcohol problem and sought out medical support," Ms Ferguson said.
Magistrate Stephanie Tonkin said family support would be crucial in his rehabilitation.
"I appreciate that your circumstances were pretty difficult at the time, but alcohol rarely makes things better and in fact has now made things much worse," she said.
"You were obviously quite dangerous on that night - I'm hearing you consumed a litre of pretty strong alcohol and the way that your car was found and the fact you were slumped over the wheel shows you had no capacity to be driving a car."
Ms Tonkin fined him $1100 and disqualified him from driving for nine months.