Sentence summary: Culpable driving
The offender intermittently binged on methamphetamine (Ice) for several days, during which he had very little sleep. A rebound effect of the binge was significant drowsiness, and while the offender was driving he veered onto the wrong side of the road and collided with an oncoming car, killing the driver, the victim.
The offender pleaded guilty to one charge of culpable driving causing death and admitted a summary offence of driving a motor vehicle without a licence.
The judge noted the offender had a number of convictions for drug use and driving offending, which he said indicated a lack of respect for the law.
Given that the offender’s experience with Ice would have made him aware of how the drug would affect him, the judge said the offender’s moral culpability was high. The only factor keeping the offence from being considered to be at the most serious end of the spectrum was that the offender wasn’t speeding or deliberately engaging in driving that was in breach of the road rules. The judge took into account the offender’s early guilty plea and accepted the offender was genuinely remorseful.
The judge considered a number of victim impact statements which had been tendered.
The judge found that while the offender’s prospects of rehabilitation weren’t hopeless, his continual lapses in the past – including using a compensation payment for a back injury to buy Ice – were not a cause for any great optimism.
The offender was sentenced to seven years and six months’ imprisonment with a non-parole period of five years.