Mount Isa Magistrates Court hears of man seven times over legal alcohol limit

The Barkly Highway about 10 kilometres north of Mount Isa CBD, near where a drink driver was intercepted with a blood alcohol reading of 0.361. Photo: Chris Burns.
The Barkly Highway about 10 kilometres north of Mount Isa CBD, near where a drink driver was intercepted with a blood alcohol reading of 0.361. Photo: Chris Burns.

A 39-YEAR-OLD Northern Territory man was more than seven times the legal alcohol limit when caught driving a stolen car on the Barkly Highway. 

Darren Rodney Beasley had been arrested when found near the old rodeo ground almost 10 kilometres north of the Mount Isa central business district. 

Beasley will go to jail. 

Mount Isa Magistrate James Morton said that Beasley’s alcohol reading was 0.361 when tested by police last Friday at about 1.45pm. 

Mr Morton said it was alleged that Beasley stole a car and a trailer attached to it which was parked in front of a Mount Isa property. It is further understood that the keys were in the car ignition when Beasley stole it. 

The magistrate said that Beasley was swerving wildly on the highway when police stopped him. 

“What is the most remarkable thing is there has been no carnage as a result of his driving,” Mr Morton said. 

“(At that reading) how anyone can get into a car and put it into motion on the Barkly Highway is beyond comprehension...road trains continually use that road to and fro on a regular basis.

“I haven’t seen a reading that high serving in the legal system.” 

Beasley pleaded guilty to drink driving, driving without care or attention, disqualified driving, unlawful use of a motor vehicle, and to a fraud matter. 

Beasley’s total imprisonment term is nine months but during that time several sentences will be served at once. However, his parole release date is September 29. His total length of licence disqualification is four years and he is fined $1500. 

Being charged with these crimes means Beasley has triggered a suspended one month jail term – which cannot be served at the same time as the other sentences. It had to be added to his term. He had been given the suspended imprisonment sentence in the Mount Isa Magistrates Court earlier this year. 

The magistrate rejected the submission by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service’s (ATSILS) solicitor Michael Corbin that it would be unjust for Beasley to also serve the suspended sentence. 

Mr Morton said that the defendant had lengthy criminal histories in the NT and Qld. He had been charged with drink drinking with a reading of 0.207 in 2015, a reading of 0.294 in 2012, and 0.253 in 2011. 

“His readings are just getting higher and higher,” Mr Morton said.