A mother of two who had a reputation for “doctor shopping” in Colac to get drugs crashed into a tree, killing her 17-year-old son and injuring three others in the car, a court has heard.
Police claimed Mandy Stevenson, 39, was driving at speeds up to 115km/h and falling asleep at the wheel after taking a combination of drugs, including methadone and Xanax, before the crash.
Ms Stevenson appeared in the Melbourne Magistrates Court charged with one count of culpable driving causing death, one count of dangerous driving causing death, two counts of negligent driving causing serious injury, three counts of dangerous driving causing serious injury, driving under the influence of drugs, and driving an unregistered and unroadworthy car.
Detective Sergeant Chris Carnie, of the major collision investigation unit, told the court Ms Stevenson had been driving on the Colac-Murroon Road at Murroon, east of Colac, about 4.20pm on July 6, 2011, when she crashed into a tree.
Ms Stevenson’s 17-year-old son was pinned between the tree and the back of the driver’s seat. He had not been wearing a seatbelt and died at the scene.
Ms Stevenson’s 10-year-old son had been in the front seat and suffered a fractured skull and cut to the head.
A 15-year-old girl sitting in the rear passenger side seat suffered fractures to the vertebrae. She was able to get out of the Ford and wave down passing motorists to help.
A 14-year-old boy in the centre rear seat, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was trapped in the car and had to be rescued by emergency workers. He suffered sustained fractures of the skull and haemorrhaging to the brain.
Detective Sergeant Carnie told the court the 14-year-old claimed Ms Stevenson took some Xanax pills shortly after they left the 15-year-old girl’s home and then asked the teenagers if they wanted some. The 14-year-old boy took one, the girl had one and Ms Stevenson’s 17-year-old son took two.
A blood sample taken from Ms Stevenson showed she had traces of methadone, methadone metabolite, Oxycodone, Seroquel and Xanax.
Detective Sergeant Carnie said Ms Stevenson had a long history of drug abuse and had a reputation in Colac for “doctor shopping”.
Magistrate Peter Reardon adjourned the case to January 30 for a committal mention and released Ms Stevenson on bail with strict conditions, including that she not drive a motor vehicle or see a doctor.