Ex-TV journo’s alleged erratic hours before friend’s death
A former Channel 7 journalist accused of causing the death of his friend in a drunken, high-speed smash in Melbourne's east spent the morning drinking champagne before getting behind the wheel of his friend's Mercedes, a court has heard.
Trent Evans, 43, was arrested after the fatal smash in Burnley on Saturday that claimed the life of his passenger, 44-year-old Rex Willox.
Mr Evans, a television reporter turned DJ, allegedly had a blood alcohol reading of 0.1 - twice the legal limit - when he crashed Mr Willox's Mercedes into a power pole in Barkly Ave.
It's alleged Mr Evans was driving at 113kmh in a 60kmh zone.
Mr Willox died at the scene and Mr Evans was charged with culpable driving causing his death.
Detective Leading Senior Constable Matthew Hunt told the Melbourne Magistrates' Court on Tuesday night Mr Evans had been seen driving erratically, almost sideswiping other vehicles before the crash.
The court heard Mr Evans and Mr Willox drank three bottles of champagne together at Mr Willox's Toorak apartment that morning and Mr Evans decided to drive because he said he was the less drunk of the pair.
Magistrate Tara Hartnett said it was "astonishing" no other motorists were hurt or killed.
The court heard Mr Evans is unemployed and has spent the past 12 months living in a Parkville motor inn.
Mr Evans was granted bail on Tuesday night under strict conditions, including that he not drive a car, drink alcohol or take drugs, and that he remains at his fixed address in Parkville.
On social media, Mr Evans describes himself as a "journalist, producer and DJ who had a top 40 song in the 1990s".
He worked as a news reporter for Channel 7 in Melbourne and regional Queensland.
More recently, Mr Evans was self-employed, working as "DJ Trentè" across Melbourne.
His social media boasts performances at top Melbourne nightclubs including Love Machine in Prahran.
In 2019, Evans performed alongside 90s pop duo Bachelor Girl and in 2018 appeared as an extra in the Ride Like a Girl film.
He will face a committal mention on June 17. The Herald Sun has approached Evans for comment.
Originally published as Ex-TV journo's alleged erratic hours before friend's death