It is reported that in October last year, the news director of the Nine Network, Darren Wick drove a motor vehicle with a high-range BAC reading in Willoughby. This accounts for the Nine Network news director’s second drink driving offence.
The court heard that the 58-year-old has a mid-range drink driving offence in 2010, and on the day he was pulled over by the police, he had consumed alcohol during lunch before returning back to the office where he continued drinking alcohol during a colleague’s going-away party.
After finishing up at the going-away party, he then proceeded to get behind the wheel and drive.
The police set of facts, which were handed up in court as the agreed account of the offence outlined that his Jeep Grand Cherokee was spotted by police officers at approximately 6:25pm mounting a footpath on Willoughby Rd.
Police noticed that Wick required help to stand and walk after he was pulled over and requested to get out of the vehicle on Penshurst St. He was arrested and taken back to the Chatswood police station where he returned a high-range reading of 0.227.
The court heard that he had told police that he commenced consuming alcohol at 1pm with his final drink 3 hours prior to being pulled over by police. He also told police that he had a beer and 3 glasses of wine during lunch.
Wick has admitted to having an alcohol addiction, and has since admitted himself into rehabilitation at the South Pacific Private rehabilitation facility at Curl Curl.
The court further heard that, since his hip replacements and torn Achilles tendon, he was no longer able to continue exercising as a way to relieve stress. As a result, he resorted to consuming alcohol to assuage those symptoms.
Wick was ultimately sentenced for high-range drink driving to a 9-months intensive correction order involving 100 hours of community service work and 9 months licence disqualification. At the completion of his disqualification, he will be required to participate in a minimum 2-years interlock period, during which time he will be permitted to drive with conditions.
High-range drink driving offences carry penalties of up to 18-months imprisonment or $3,300 fine, or both for first offenders. Second or subsequent offenders face up to 14-months imprisonment or $5,500 fine, or both.
First time offenders also face 6-9 months of compulsory licence disqualification in addition to a minimum of 2-years interlock period. A second offender faces 9 months to 1-years compulsory disqualification and then a 4-years minimum interlock period.