Meth and alcohol-fuelled driver given suspended sentence

Meth and alcohol-fuelled driver given suspended sentence

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21-year-old Harry Haustein appeared at the Armadale Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday via video link.

The man who caused a five-car crash during a meth and alcohol binge on the Albany Highway in Cannington will be released after serving four months behind bars.

At around 7.30pm on January 21 this year, 20-year-old Harry Zane Haustein from Waikiki chose to drive his Holden Rodeo ute at speed through a red light at the Albany Highway intersection with Kenwick Link and William Rd.

His defence lawyer at his sentencing at the Armadale Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday claimed the crash was in part caused because Mr Haustein had been awake for several days straight after “self-soothing” with alcohol and methamphetamines.

A number of cars, including a Toyota Camry, Honda CRV, Mitsubishi Lancer and a Toyota Kluger station sedan, were all impacted in the crash. The crash caused Mr Haustein’s car to flip onto its roof.

The driver of the Toyota Camry was injured and taken to hospital for treatment of a fractured ankle, and sprained wrist, however no other drivers were hurt.

In court it was revealed that Mr Haustein – now 21-years-old – had never had a driving licence.

Mr Haustein then assaulted a police officer in the immediate aftermath; he punched the officer in the temple, and then in the lip after the officer had put his hand on Mr Haustein’s shoulder.

The officer was taken to hospital after the attack with swelling and bruising, and complained of a headache.

Upon his arrest, Mr Haustein was charged with a number of offences including dangerous driving causing bodily harm, assault of a public officer and driving under the influence of alcohol.

After the crash, Mr Haustein was heard to say about the injured crash victim:

“I hope she died, I hope I killed her family”.

His defence lawyer said he had no recollection of uttering those words, which was a consequence of several days of meth-use.

He has been in custody since June 20.

Mr Haustein appeared from Albany Regional Prison via video link on Tuesday to receive his sentencing.

Magistrate Brian Mahon said that Mr Haustein’s actions had caused “pain and suffering and could have caused a loss of life” and that the community needed to “be kept safe from your decisions”.

He said the crimes committed, and the “dribble” that came out of Mr Haustein’s mouth afterwards, were “so serious that it has to be a term of imprisonment”.

However, the magistrate took into account Mr Haustein’s four months in custody and his early pleas before giving him a further nine-month sentence, but suspended conditionally for a period of 12 months. The terms of the conditions included supervision, drug testing and reporting to authorities within 72 hours of release.

“You will attend without fail, participate without fail, engage without fail, or I will not hesitate in sending you back to prison … for what it’s worth I don’t think you’ll be coming back to me,” Magistrate Mahon said.

He also imposed a three-year driving disqualification.

“I paused over whether it should be longer than three years,” he said.

Mr Haustein was also fined $1200 for assaulting an officer, and $1200 fines for each person impacted by the crash.