P-plater loses licence after drink-driving

Guilty plea: A Kyabram man pleaded guilty at Echuca Magistrates’ Court to drink driving and driving while suspended. Photo by Cath Grey

A probationary driver who told police he did not know he had alcohol in his system despite recording a blood alcohol level more than double the legal limit for a fully licensed driver has been handed a 12-month community corrections order.

Jayden Robert Charles, 27, of Kyabram, pleaded guilty to drink-driving and driving while his licence was suspended, at Echuca Magistrates’ Court.

The court heard on July 2, 2021, Charles was seen by police driving through the High St and Heygarth St roundabout in Echuca at a speed not appropriate for the wet road conditions at the time.

The prosecutor said the car was not displaying P-plates on the front or back, and Charles returned a 0.115 blood alcohol concentration reading to an evidentiary breath test.

He told police he did not have P-plates as it was not his vehicle, and that he did not know he had alcohol in his system.

He also pleaded guilty to drink driving a year earlier on July 6, 2020, when he was intercepted by police on Edis St, Kyabram, and breath tested, returning a 0.055 blood alcohol reading. Checks revealed his licence had expired.

Charles told police he did not think he was over the limit or that he was unlicensed.

He was also caught driving while his licence was suspended in January and March 2021.

Charles’ lawyer said he had been clean from alcohol for three months and was seeking support.

Magistrate Megan Aumair imposed a 12-month community corrections order, including 75 hours of unpaid community work.

Ms Aumair disqualified Charles from driving for 22 months, backdated to the July 2 drink driving offence.