Woman caught drink driving nine times - the last while on bail appealing her jail sentence

A Woodend woman has been caught drink driving nine times since 2013 - some with readings close to four-times the legal limit.
A Woodend woman has been caught drink driving nine times since 2013 - some with readings close to four-times the legal limit.

A WOODEND woman who was jailed for her eighth drink driving offence appealed the sentence, only to be caught allegedly drink driving for a ninth time while on appeal bail earlier this month.

Larni Unwin, 50, was denied bail in the Castlemaine Magistrates’ Court on Monday facing multiple charges for drink driving and driving while disqualified.

Most of her offences occurred in Woodend and Lancefield.

Unwin was first caught drink driving in 2013 when she had a reading of 0.191 – almost four times the legal limit.

She was placed on an adjourned undertaking before she was caught drink driving two more times in 2015, with readings of 0.139 and 0.174.

Unwin was placed on a 12-month community corrections order, which she breached by being caught drink driving four more times, the highest reading being 0.163.

The four charges were rolled together and Unwin was placed on an 18-month community corrections order and her licence was cancelled for five years.

She was back behind the wheel – and drink driving – again soon after, however.

On May 5 this year, Unwin recorded a reading of 0.088.

She was sentenced to four months’ prison on September 11, but appealed the sentence and was released on appeal bail.

Without a licence and while waiting to fight her jail term, Unwin was allegedly caught drink driving for a ninth time, in Woodend on December 9.

She gave a reading of 0.041. As an unlicensed driver, her limit was 0.

The court heard Unwin had been drinking the night before and thought it would be safe to get behind the wheel to go to the supermarket. She told police “it was just stupid”.

Unwin spent nine days in custody before she applied for bail in the Castlemaine Magistrates’ Court on Monday. It was her first time in custody.

Her car was impounded for 30 days and she argued that she would no longer be a risk to the public without access to a vehicle.

Magistrate Sarah Leighfield said she was concerned that Unwin would still find a car to drive, as previous court matters had not been a deterrent.

She denied bail, and said Unwin knew what the consequences would have been if she was caught again.

“She is in a position where she shouldn’t be driving at all,” Ms Leighfield said.

“How could I possibly find that she’s not a risk of getting behind the wheel of another vehicle?

“With the history that you’ve got, despite your work with a counsellor, I can’t be satisfied that you’re not an unacceptable risk.

“You are putting other people’s lives at risk.”

Unwin was remanded in custody. Her appeal will be heard in the County Court in Melbourne on January 17, and she will face the Castlemaine Magistrates’ Court on January 22 for the new drink driving matters.