.203 from 2 glasses of home brew

NORTH Albury man Steven John Ferrara claims he had two glasses of home-made wine and two beers before registering a blood alcohol reading of 0.203 after crashing into a post at a service station.

A court has been told the incident happened about 9.28pm on April 1 last year as police officers made room with their vehicle for Ferrara to back out of a parking spot at the APCO station in Mate Street.

But he hit the post near a petrol bowser and began to drive off before being stopped.

“Yeah, sorry about that. I’ll pay for any damage,” Ferrara told police.

He smelt of alcohol, was arrested and provided a reading more than four times the legal limit in a breath analysis.

Ferrara said he had consumed two glasses of home-made wine and two full strength beers watching football at home.

Ferrara, 50, of Tarakan Avenue, appeared for sentencing in Albury Local Court yesterday on charges of high-range drink-driving, driving when his licence was suspended and refusing to stop for a breath test.

Police were doing random breath testing in David Street about 9pm on January 26 last year.

Ferrara approached in his vehicle, slowed and then drove past, but was pursued by police and stopped.

“I just panicked,” he told police who suspended his licence.

He was still without his licence when the other offence was committed in April.

Magistrate Tony Murray last October ordered an assessment of Ferrara for an intensive corrections order.

But he was deemed unsuitable. Solicitor Paul Robb said Ferrara is hoping to get back in the work force in his occupation as a butcher.

Mr Murray said there were a number of aggravating features with the incident in April.

He put Ferrara on a seven-month suspended sentence for the drink-driving and suspended driving matters along with imposing a 40-month disqualification.

Ferrara was fined $400 for failing to stop for a breath test.

Mr Murray quashed a finding that Ferrara is a habitual traffic offender and ordered him to complete a drink driver education course.