Dad jailed for sixth high-range drink driving bust
A father who was charged with his sixth high-range drink driving offence refused to give a breath test when police found him in his car the next day.
Jason Anthony Gillie was on Tuesday jailed after he drove while five times the limit.
Maroochydore Magistrates Court heard the 34-year-old was away in Emerald for work on February 12 when police spotted him driving erratically.
They pulled him over at 7pm.
He told the officers he'd been drinking for seven hours and returned a breath alcohol concentration of 0.253 per cent.
The next evening, Gillie was spotted leaving the local bottle shop and walking to his car.
The court heard police found him sitting in the passenger seat of the car with the engine running, airconditioning blasting and lights on.
He returned a roadside breath test of 0.302 per cent but failed to provide a further specimen of breath.
Police prosecutor Amanda Brewer argued a sentence of six to nine-months, to serve a third, was appropriate.
Gillie pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of liquor and failing to provide a specimen of breath on requirement.
He had seven previous convictions for drink driving, five of which were high-range offences.
Defence lawyer Chelsea Emery said her client had received advice from police that he could sleep in his car as long as he didn't have his keys anywhere near the ignition.
She said he had the engine running to cool down in the airconditioning and charge his phone, and accidentally turned the lights on in his drunken state.
She said Gillie's marriage had ended and as a result of these offences he had now lost his job and subsequently his house.
"A day prior to the first offence, he found out that his partner of 14 years and the mother of his two children was cheating on him," Ms Emery said.
"He found out because there was a family function.
"His uncle heard her phone ring, thought it was his phone, picked it up and saw a message on my client's wife's phone saying 'Is it wrong that I can't stop thinking of you?'."
Ms Emery said Gillie confronted his wife.
"She admitted she had been having a relationship but the next day he had to go off to work to the mines and he did so," Ms Emery said.
"He recognises in hindsight that he should have stayed home and dealt with this entire situation but thought that he had to keep his job."
Ms Emery said Gillie was on his way to Emerald for work when he began receiving messages from the girlfriend of the man his wife was having an affair with.
"Because he was also cheating on her," she said.
"And she provided my client with photos of his wife and that male together."
The court heard Gillie was "floored" by the situation and began drinking.
Ms Emery said the father-of-two had put his troubles with his wife aside to co-parent his children.
"In fact, they went bowling on the weekend together as a family unit," Ms Emery said.
"It's an indication of his character in relation to his family."
Gillie had completed the Time for Change program which addresses alcohol-related behaviour.
Ms Emery argued he should be given a sentence that would allow him to remain in the community to continue rehabilitation.
Magistrate Matthew McLaughlin said there was no way to know what Gillie was going to do next after he made the "bizarre" decision to turn his head lights on in order to sleep in his car.
He said Gillie's decisions were appalling.
"In my view, the community expects people like you, repeat high-range drink drivers, to go back to jail where you've been before for doing the same thing," Mr McLaughlin said.
Gillie was sentenced to six months in jail, suspended after serving two months.
His licence was disqualified for three years.