Drunken joyride ends in jail

By Court reporter

A 20-year-old who went on a drunken joyride in a stolen car and then crashed it in Aramoho has been jailed for six months.

Ora Neilson had been on remand since August 22 and was sent back to prison at his sentencing on Monday.

He had earlier admitted unlawfully taking a motor vehicle, driving while prohibited and drink-driving causing injury in the Whanganui District Court on August 22.

On August 21, Neilson, an unlicensed driver, and an associate pushed a Subaru Legacy from a commercial property on to Heads Rd, Wanganui, and spent the afternoon driving it around before taking it back to his house.

In the early hours of August 22, after drinking, Neilson and two associates took the car for a joyride, driving at speeds of up to 120km/h.

Neilson was unable to negotiate an intersection in Aramoho and drove across Kaikokopu Rd, through a fence and into the side of a storage shed facility. He ran from the scene leaving behind an injured associate.

Neilson, who lost two front teeth in the crash, was taken to hospital, where he recorded a blood alcohol reading of 129 milligrams per 100 millilitres of blood was taken. The legal limit is 80 milligrams.

This was the first time Neilson had appeared in court on charges of this type, but he had 21 previous convictions for a variety of offences. He had been imprisoned three times for breaches of release conditions.

Judge Dugald Mathieson said Neilson had demonstrated non-compliance and had failed to attend drug and alcohol counselling.

Neilson was sentenced to six months in prison and must pay reparation of $1500 for damage to the stolen vehicle and $500 for the shed.

Concurrent sentences of six months in prison and disqualification from driving for 18 months were handed down for the drink-driving causing injury, and dishonesty charge.


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