In a Local Court appearance on January 24, 70-year-old Basil Pettit of Hanna Street pleaded guilty to multiple driving offenses, including driving under the influence of alcohol, negligent driving, failure to provide particulars to the owner of damaged property, and using an unregistered and uninsured motor vehicle.
The court heard that Pettit, who acknowledged health issues and was grieving, is currently seeking counselling from both a psychologist and a counsellor.
Described as a "sporadic binge drinker" by magistrate Rana Daher, Pettit admitted to police he had been drinking throughout the day leading up to the incident.
According to police facts tendered to the court, on August 31, 2023, Pettit pulled into a driveway in Hanna Street, sounding the horn before rapidly reversing out.
He drove across the road into another residence, colliding with an iron gate, a boat trailer with an attached boat, and an adjoining fence, causing significant damages.
Police reported that Pettit left the scene without attempting to contact the owners of the damaged properties.
A witness alerted the police, leading to their attendance at the scene.
After speaking with one of the owners of the damaged fence, police proceeded to Pettit's residence, where they observed the vehicle with damage to the rear end.
At Pettit's residence, police said they found him collapsed on the driveway.
Despite unsuccessful attempts to sit up, it became apparent to the police that Pettit was under the influence of alcohol.
In response to the charges, Pettit received a 12-month supervised Conditional Release Order, a 24-month interlock requirement, a six month disqualification, and a $300 fine.