A COBDEN man caught driving at 150km/h with three children in the car received a suspended jail term yesterday.
Garon Roderick McLean, 31, of Parrott Street, pleaded guilty in Warrnambool Magistrates Court to one count of driving at a dangerous speed.
The court heard that at 8.37pm on September 15 last year, McLean was driving his recently purchased SS Commodore along the Cobden-Warrnambool Road when he was recorded by police travelling at 150km/h.
Police caught up with him after he pulled over at Lake Elingamite to have a cigarette, at which point they noticed McLean had three children, aged 8-14, in the car.
The court heard that McLean had prior offences for speeding, careless driving, failing to report an accident and refusing a breath test.
Defence counsel Justin Serong described his client’s record as “indefensible” and magistrate Jonathan Klestadt agreed, saying that McLean had a habit of pushing the envelope with his driving.
“The physics of what you were doing was extraordinarily dangerous — you’re not giving yourself enough time to react to something in front of you,” Mr Klestadt said.
“You’re putting yourself and your three children at great risk at this speed.
“Anybody who drives on this road knows there is wildlife about. If you hit anything at a speed of this nature it would be like a bomb going off.”
Mr Klestadt acknowledged the excellent character references put forward in McLean’s defence, but noted that if McLean continued driving the way he had been those references would merely translate into “a bigger funeral”.
Mr Klestadt sentenced McLean to one month in prison, which was suspended for two years. He was also fined $2500 with $69.70 costs and had his licence disqualified for 12 months.