A SAUSAGE roll and eight schooners left an Orange man $1000 out of pocket, off the road for a year and with a criminal record.
Robert Mervyn Herbert of Leura Road was dobbed in to police by patrons at the Carrington Hotel who saw him consume alcohol at the pub, stumble to his car, get in and drive away.
Police found his car a short distance away and according to the facts presented to the court, police could smell alcohol emanating from the driver.
Herbert had his wife in the front, passenger seat of his car and had trouble winding down the window and turning the car off, police said.
They breath tested Herbert and he returned a blood alcohol reading of 0.162.
The reading for high range drink-driving is anything above 0.15.
He told police he had started drinking at 7pm and had his eighth VB beer at 11pm, he was pulled over at 12.02am.
During the time he had only eaten a sausage roll.
Magistrate Roger Clisdell said in many ways, Herbert was extremely lucky because the patrons at the Carrington who alerted police and the police potentially saved him or someone else from “catastrophe”.
“Drink-driving will not be tolerated,” Mr Clisdell said.
Herbert’s defence was based on the premise he was upset at the time of the crime, his wife split up with him a short time after the incident and took his seven children with her to Queensland and that he offered no excuse but an apology.
He completed a traffic offenders’ program and needed his licence for work but Mr Clisdell rejected his submission and said “this behaviour needs to be punished”.