White Hills drink-driver almost five times over limit

A White Hills man caught driving with a blood alcohol content nearly five times the legal limit has been taken off the road for two years.

Sonny Middleton, 27, was seen driving down Nolan Street on Bendigo about 2.45am on July 8, without headlights or taillights.

A breath test showed Middleton’s blood alcohol content was 0.242 per cent, close to an hour after he was caught.

The car salesman told police he had only had a couple of pots, but officers observed he was “highly intoxicated”.

Middleton pleaded guilty to one count of drink-driving in the Bendigo Magistartes Court last week.

He said he was “terribly sorry” for his offending.

Magistrate Richard Wright said 0.242 was a big reading. 

“I’m concerned because it was a high level and driving without lights is taking a bit of a chance,” Mr Wright said. “I need to send you a strong message about drink-driving.”

Mr Wright imposed a $1200 fine, cancelled Middleton’s licence and disqualified him from driving for two years.

Last year Middleton was accused of speeding and refusing a breath test, but fought the charges, citing a case of mistaken identity. He claimed a friend had driven his car home from Bradies Tavern in Strathfieldsaye on January 23 last year as a “practical joke”.

He was found guilty of the charges in the Bendigo Magistrates Court on December 21, last year, but the case was dismissed on appeal in the Victorian County Court on May 1.

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