Man jailed for drink driving

GRAFTON Local Court heard yesterday a 46-year-old Seelands man sentenced to jail for his eighth drink driving offence was given wine in his milk as a baby by his alcoholic parents.

Colin James Fraser fronted court yesterday, well groomed and wearing black pants, a jacket and tie, but his natty appearance cut no ice with Magistrate John McIntosh.

The magistrate was aghast when reading Fraser's criminal record.

“Where's the deterrence in that?” he was heard to mutter while reading the police facts and criminal antecedents.

Fraser's solicitor, Greg Coombes, pointed out although his client had a dreadful driving record, the latest offence, a mid-range PCA on May 23, was only his second drink driving offence in the past 13 years.

However, Mr McIntosh cut him short, saying his record of drink driving offences was interspersed with drive while disqualified charges, speeding and other driving offences.

“I think you're being generous with the description of his driving record,” the magistrate said.

Mr Coombes said the latest offence occurred when Fraser and a companion had been drinking beer at McKittrick Park, South Grafton.

He said his client had been worried about a relationship break-up and visiting rights to his 10-year-old son.

“They were sitting there drinking beer and feeling sorry for themselves,” Mr Coombes said.

“He only drove because his friend asked him to. Police only became aware the car was there when he switched on the lights.”

The police facts revealed Fraser was noticeably affected by alcohol. His eyes were bloodshot, he smelt of alcohol and his movements were sluggish.

“I only drove because she (his female passenger) insisted on going for a drive,” he told police at the time.

Mr Coombes said his client left school after Year Seven and came from an alcoholic family who mixed wine with his milk as a baby.

Mr McIntosh sentenced Fraser to nine months' jail with a non-parole period of six months, starting from yesterday.

He is eligible for release on January 11 next year.



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