From the Magistrate’s Court comes the intriguing tale of how Matthew Jon Windle hired a good lawyer to get off a drink driving charge.
It started with a red light run from Cooyong Street onto Northbourne in front of police. It followed a predictable path of slurred speech, reeking of alcohol, and some difficulty standing.
Then it all started to go wrong:
An analysis was subsequently carried out by Constable Dzido and the Drager Alcotest 7110 Mark V breath analysing instrument recorded that the defendant had a reading of 0.221 grams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood. A Section 41 Certificate (Exhibit A) was tendered without objection save Mr Pappas had raised, quite properly, very early in the proceedings that the defendant contested two facts:
(a) the Drager Alcotest 7110 Mark V was not an approved instrument; and,
(b) that Constable Dzido was not an approved operator.
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It seems that the “a” in Drager has an umlaut. Because we are L33t we can write it like this: “Dräger”
But whomever drafted the Notifiable Instrument N12004-134 and shoved it under Bill Wood’s nose for signing was not L33t at all, and left out the umlauts.
Magistrate Cush in the end decided that this was being silly buggers, and who needs umlauts anyway. But then another case reared it’s head.
Carlos Gonzalez had a go at chucking out N12004-134 on the basis that it only approved the Drager as a screening device and not an analysis device. Something which so alarmed the ACT Government they put out a new instrument the same day the oversight was raised.
The instrument also cited the wrong section of the Act from which it is derived.
Magistrate Cush decided these problems too were silly buggers.
But the matter of Constable Dzido not being approved as an operator a year and a half after he had completed the appropriate course was something the Magistrate could not overlook and so the repeat offending Matthew Windle with a reading of 0.221gm is still on our streets.
It’s a hell of a way to run a Territory.