A Hamilton driver has pleaded not guilty to charges relating to the death of a man, who was lying on a driveway.
Dale Kennett, 54, on Friday pleaded not guilty in the Warrnambool County Court to dangerous driving causing death and failing to stop after an accident.
Victoria police major collision investigation unit detectives laid the charges after an incident on March 10 last year in which a pedestrian was struck by a vehicle in Henry Court just after 3am.
The victim, 48-year-old Hamilton man Jason Young, died at the accident scene.
Judge Fran Dalziel told the jury in her outline of the case, the key to the main charge was the nature of Mr Kennett's driving - whether it was dangerous and significantly increased the risk of death or serious injury over and above the normal risks associated with driving.
In his opening address, Crown prosecutor Andrew Moore said it would be alleged Mr Kennett reversed down a driveway, over Mr Young and then dove off.
He said Mr Young sustained fatal injuries and died at the scene.
Mr Moore said the incident happened between 2.45am and 3am on March 10 last year and there was no apparently previous association between Mr Kennett and Mr Young.
A number of witnesses will give evidence of what they observed before and after the incident.
Mr Kennett drove off in his Nissan Pulsar but was intercepted soon after by police because he only had one headlight operating.
Mr Moore said other significant evidence would include a blood sample taken from Mr Kennett after the incident which revealed a "very high level of methylamphatamine" and smaller readings for amphetamine and cannabis.
He said a Hamilton taxi driver would give evidence about picking up four people including Mr Young about 1.50am.
Mr Moore said there was evidence Mr Kennett was asleep in his car in the driveway.
The taxi picked up people about 2.20am and then returned with them at 2.45am.
It's expected the taxi driver will say he saw a vehicle in the driveway start to reverse"rather quickly" and he moved his taxi from across the driveway around the bulb of the cul-de-sac.
"He was able to see the accused reverse out. He saw the accused drive out, over the deceased and then drive off," Mr Moore said.
"He had the bird's eye view. He saw the accused drive over the deceased. He says the car went up in the air."
Mr Moore said the home owner told police Mr Kennett had run over Mr Young and drove off.
"He ran over him. I'm a witness. He ran over him, 'bang bang'," he said.
Police will allege Mr Kennett told them when he was intercepted that he feared being attacked by the resident, he drove off, hit something and thought he may have run over a wheelie bin.
Mr Moore said another witness would claim Mr Kennett did a burn out in the driveway before striking Mr Young and then accelerated away.
He said Mr Kennett had reversed quickly, only had one headlight, his windows were possibly fogged up, he had a "very high" level of ice and the deceased was lying across the end of the driveway, although it was unclear why he was in that position, but he was intoxicated.
An expert witness is expected to say the level of ice and combination of drugs in Mr Kennett's system meant he should not have been driving and was a "real and appreciable risk to members of the public".
Barrister Campbell Thomson, for Mr Kennett, said a man had died in unusual circumstances but that did not mean his client's driving had been dangerous.
He said a toddler could be killed in a driveway or if someone ran in front of a vehicle travelling below the speed limit, and they could be seen as unfortunate accidents.
Mr Thomson questioned whether anyone in Mr Kennett's position would have been able to see someone lying across the driveway.
"That is the issue," he said.
The barrister said it was up to the prosecution to establish a causal link and assessing the impact of drugs on Mr Kennett would be an intellectual exercise.
Mr Thomson invited the jury to look at the circumstances and decide whether the manner of his client's driving was objectively dangerous.
The trial is expected to continue all next week.
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