A MAN who stopped in the middle of the Calder Freeway to verbally abuse another driver has been fined.
Troy Rainczuk, 28, pleaded guilty in the Bendigo Magistrates' Court to nine charges including resisting police and criminal damage.
The court heard on March 20 this year, police were called to a pub in Melton. While officers were talking to security guards, they saw Rainczuk urinating near the road.
The court heard he was clearly intoxicated and was smelling of alcohol. Police spoke to Rainczuk and confirmed he was wanted on a warrant.
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Another person with Rainczuk became aggressive with the police and the group failed to comply with the officers.
Rainczuk was arrested and taken to the Melton Police Station, but he was too intoxicated to be interviewed. He was eventually released on bail.
The court heard then about 8.50pm on March 28 this year, Rainczuk was driving in a white Kia south-bound on the Calder Freeway between Macedon and Gisborne.
The court heard Rainczuk was speeding in excess of 140km/h before slowing down to 60km/h and then speeding up again. He was also swerving between lanes and driving in the emergency lane.
The court heard Rainczuk then stopped in the right-hand lane of the freeway, causing another car to stop behind him.
Rainczuk got out of the car and started verbally abusing the other driver, and punched and kicked the car's side mirror.
The occupants of the victim's car video recorded the incident on a phone. Rainczuk eventually returned to the car and drove away. He was on bail at the time.
Rainczuk was arrested and brought to the Kyneton Police Station on October 16 this year. He was refused bail and was remanded in custody.
Defence counsel David Grace QC told the court Rainczuk was remorseful for his offending and knew he was "acting stupidly" with his driving.
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Mr Grace said Rainczuk believed the victim was tailgating him the night of the incident, which made Rainczuk upset. But the defence counsel said that belief did not justify Rainczuk's offending.
"It was atrocious driving behaviour that deserves the greatest of punishments," he said.
Mr Grace said Rainczuk had been addicted to drugs, including ice, since his early 20s.
While he had received treatment for the addiction, Mr Grace said Rainczuk still had issues with alcohol use and behaviour that caused him to "play up".
But Mr Grace said Rainczuk had a stable job that he wanted to get back to. He said a term of imprisonment would jeopardise that opportunity.
Prosecutor First Constable Matthew Hendry said Rainczuk's conduct was "atrocious" and that Rainczuk's apparent frustration at the victim was "no excuse" for his offending.
First Constable Hendry said a term of imprisonment would be an appropriate sentence.
Magistrate Rodney Higgins convicted and sentenced Rainczuk to a $2500 fine. His four days in pre-sentence detention was reckoned as already served.
Rainczuk's driver's licence was already suspended.
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