Bloomsbury dad loses $140K job after drunken ute crash
A Bloomsbury man lost his $140,000 a year job after crashing his employer's car into a fence while more than three times the legal limit.
Steven James Schalcher crashed the ute on Midge Point Rd on New Year's Eve when he was going to buy a bottle of coke for his partner to mix with rum.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Sarah Rowe told Proserpine Magistrates Court on Monday when police arrived at the scene, Schalcher had slurred speech and mud all over him.
Sen-Constable Rowe said Schalcher was taken to Proserpine Police Station and found to have a blood alcohol concentration of 0.153 per cent.
The 34-year-old man told police he had been drinking full-strength Great Northern beer and had driven to the BP petrol station to buy the softdrink.
Schalcher pleaded guilty to driving without proper control and driving under the influence of liquor.
Lawyer Geoff Govey, acting for Schalcher, said the Bloomsbury man lost his job because of the crash.
"Not only has he had this accident, will lose his licence and he's also in a position that he's lost a $140,000 year job," Mr Govey said.
Mr Govey told the court on top of that, Schalcher was driving his employer's ute at the time and wrote it off so he had an arrangement to pay out its lease, which worked out to be almost $18,000.
The court heard the diesel fitter and his fiance, who share three children, recently bought a home in Bloomsbury.
Mr Govey said Schalcher had gone through a rough time last year because his sister died by suicide and he took three weeks off work for counselling.
The court heard Schalcher had raised $3000 for the Black Dog Institute last year and was currently looking for work.
Magistrate James Morton said he understood Schalcher had been through a tragedy, but his actions put lives at risk.
"You could've made other arrangements, I'm sure hindsight is a good thing," Mr Morton said.
Schalcher was fined $1500 and disqualified from driving for nine months.
Convictions were recorded.