Plumber’s costly hit-and-run in front of multiple witnesses
The split second decision to speed away after ploughing into a parked car has cost a 26-year-old his job and a hefty $500 fine at the Pine Rivers Magistrates Court this week.
The court heard residents of Labyrinth Rd at Bray Park witnessed a man drive his white Ford ute into a parked Toyota sedan outside of one of their homes just before 6pm on Saturday, January 18.
The ute then reversed and drove away, leaving its number plate lodged into the back of the damaged vehicle.
The details of the registration plate led police to identify the defendant, Bray Park man Benjamin Anthony Cochrane.
Cochrane pleaded guilty to one charge of failing to provide his particulars.
The court heard Cochrane had taken his eyes off the road for a split second, and when he looked back it was too late to avoid the collision.
According to the lawyer for the defence, Cochrane "panicked" and drove off to meet his friend, whom he had planned to go out that evening with.
The court heard Cochrane, a former student at Bray Park State High School with no previous criminal history, planned to return to the vehicle the next day, but the police caught up with him first.
He had initially also been charged with drunk driving and failing to provide a specimen of his breath to police, but after months of investigations and case conferencing the police offered the court no evidence for those charges and they were dismissed.
In the meantime, however, Cochrane had been forced to go without his drivers license and consequently lost his job as a plumber.
He was fined $500 and no conviction was recorded.
Originally published as Plumber's costly hit-and-run in front of multiple witnesses