Serial drink driver to spend three months behind bars
A BAFFLE Creek man will spend at least the next three months behind bars after being convicted of his 14th drink driving offence.
53-year-old Gregg Edward Haywood last faced Gladstone Magistrates Court for this matter on April 6, charged with drink driving and disqualified driving after crashing his car on the Sunshine Coast on November 20.
Haywood was attempting to drive to a friend's house after an argument with his girlfriend in a supermarket car park led to her storming off.
Police soon recognised and followed him, after which he veered off-road and through bushland before hitting a tree.
He later recorded a blood-alcohol level reading of 0.031 per cent, above his 0 per cent limit.
Haywood's case was adjourned partway through the hearing in April to allow for a mental health assessment and for both sides to reassess their strategy after it was determined he had been on parole at the time of the offending.
The assessment satisfied Magistrate Melanie Ho that Haywood was fit for trial and of sound mind at the time.
Defence lawyer Cassandra Ditchfield did not take issue with the the prosecution's suggested sentence of nine months prison for the disqualified driving and eight months for the low-level drink driving.
But she asked Ms Ho to suspend the sentence so as to avoid her client serving actual time in prison, which police prosecutor Sgt Barry Stevens was recommending based on his long history of offending.
Ms Ho sided with the prosecution and imposed both sentences, to be served concurrently, with a parole eligibility date of August 11.
Haywood was taken into custody at the court house.