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Bottle shop workers take action to stop driver six times the limit

Seal Media Group, Australia

Former hospitality worker Micah Aaron Jones, 36, blew a whopping 0.303 blood alcohol concentration after staff at a BWS store on Island Drive dobbed him in to police about 9.45am on Monday, August 9.Proserpine Magistrates Court heard staff observed a highly intoxicated Jones pull up to the store and buy a carton of Corona beer, then stagger outside and put the beer in the boot of his car, and get into the driver’s seat.By the time police arrived at the scene, Jones had agreed to hand his car keys over to the store manager and take a taxi home – an address just a few hundred metres away from the bottle shop.Police attended Jones’ unit, observing a number of empty beer bottles inside, and he admitted he had driven his car to the BWS to buy more beer, after consuming 12 to 18 full strength Corona beers the previous night and up until 8am that morning.Jones spent the rest of the day ‘sleeping it off’ at the Whitsunday police watch-house, where his licence was immediately suspended.Police caught him driving again just 22 minutes after his release, about 4.30pm, when BWS staff again dobbed on him after watching him climb into his car and drive out of the car park.Jones’ solicitor Peta Vernon told the court her client had been out of work since September 2020 and had been struggling with mental health issues.Ms Vernon said at the time of the offending, Jones was at a “particularly low point” as he had stopped taking his prescribed antidepressant medication, was not sleeping well, and felt bad about not being able to financially support his de facto partner as much as he would have liked to.“His judgment was seriously impaired at that point in time,” Ms Vernon said. Magistrate James Morton said it was problematic that BWS staff had agreed to sell Jones the carton of beer before alerting police to his level of intoxication, but acknowledged they were not the ones “on trial”.Mr Morton noted previous drink-driving charges in Jones’ history, including readings of 0.256 and 0.110 BAC and said it was a wonder he had not found himself “hooked up to a machine in the emergency ward at Proserpine Hospital” with his latest reading of 0.303.“You don’t do drink-driving by halves do you?” Mr Morton said.“I haven’t seen a 0.303 reading for quite a long time.“You shouldn’t have been anywhere near a motor vehicle – I don’t know why you’ve got to come here to be told that.“What if you had’ve run over somebody?”Pleading guilty to charges of driving while under the influence of liquor and driving without a licence – disqualified, Jones told the court he was “annoyed” at himself and knew he “could be healthier”.Mr Morton fined him $2800 and disqualified his licence for three years, with convictions recorded.“Drinking a lot of alcohol’s not going to fix your problems,” Mr Morton said.

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