A MAN who decided to drink a number of beers within a 45 minute window before getting behind the wheel of a vehicle has been convicted in Bathurst Local Court.
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Benjamin Gooley, 46, of Evans Plains Road, Evans Plains, pleaded guilty on October 26 to mid-range drink-driving.
Police attached to the Bathurst Highway Patrol were patrolling Panorama Avenue at Mitchell about 5pm on September 16 this year when they saw Gooley driving towards them in a utility, court documents reveal.
Police said they performed a U-turn and activated their warning devices, which brought Gooley to a stop south of Mitchell Drive.
As police were speaking with Gooley, they noticed a strong smell of alcohol coming from inside the vehicle and that Gooley was slurring his words.
The court heard Gooley was arrested and taken to Bathurst Police Station after he submitted a positive roadside reading for alcohol.
While in custody, Gooley submitted a second positive reading for alcohol of 0.100.
When questioned about his drinking prior to driving, Gooley said he had three schooners of Tooheys beer between 4pm and 4.45pm.
Gooley's solicitor, Mr Cunningham, told the court his client only had a "few drinks" after work.
Magistrate Elizabeth Ellis said in response that she was "struck" by the revelation that Gooley was in the mid-range after drinking in a 45 minute window.
"One thing that struck me Mr Gooley is that if you were drinking in that short amount of time, you must've really tucked in to have a reading of 0.100," Magistrate Ellis said.
Gooley was convicted and fined $400. He was also disqualified from driving for three months.
Once his disqualification period is complete, he must have an interlock device installed in his vehicle for 12 months.
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