DPP v Hollands [2016] VCC 1113

Sentence summary: Culpable driving

The offender drank a significant amount of alcohol before deciding to ride his motorcycle home. The weather and road conditions were good, the traffic moderate and the street lighting adequate, however the offender failed to see the victim crossing the road at a pedestrian crossing and he hit him. The victim suffered catastrophic leg and internal injuries including a lacerated liver and died two days later. It was estimated the offender’s blood alcohol level was three times over the legal limit.

The offender pleaded guilty to one charge of culpable driving causing death.

The judge found the offender’s moral culpability was high, given that he must have been aware of how significantly intoxicated he was and of the dangers of drinking and driving. The judge also found that any sentence he imposed in a case like this must be calculated to deter both the offender and others from behaving in this way.

An early guilty plea and an acceptance that the offender was genuinely remorseful were taken into consideration by the judge. He also took into account that the offender had no prior convictions and had good prospects of rehabilitation. The judge also noted that the offender’s permanent resident visa would probably be revoked after he left prison and he would face probable deportation back to the UK.

The judge found that this was a serious example of the offence and that the community must be protected by the imposition of a significant term of imprisonment. He noted the profound grief the offender had caused the victim’s two daughters and their families and found that the sentence also had to reflect that the offender’s behaviour had brought a life to an end.

The offender was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment with a four year non-parole period.

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Page last updated: 26 August 2018