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Ten kids in car: drunk mum to plead guilty

Date

Mark Russell

A woman will plead guilty to drink driving when she had nine children unrestrained in the car, a court heard today.

One other child was wearing a seatbelt.

Prosecutor Hew Roberts told Melbourne Magistrates Court the woman, Tanya Chilly, would admit to being over the limit and unlicensed when she crashed her car, injuring three of the children.

Chilly will plead guilty to three counts of dangerous driving causing serious injury, nine counts of failing to ensure a child was restrained in the car, one count of driving unlicensed and one count of drink driving.

She faces a maximum five years' jail.

Chilly, 33, of Epping, had a blood alcohol level of .233 - more than four times the legal limit - when she crashed in Rockbank on August 5 last year.

There were a total of 10 children in the car, of which nine were unrestrained, aged from six months to 16 years.

Defence lawyer Jill Prior said Chilly was the mother of seven of the children.

The father of these children had also produced eight other children with his wife.

Chilly had taken her seven children to see their father at a place she called 'the paddock' where he lived in a caravan.

When she arrived, he was passed out and his brother was heavily intoxicated. Three of the man's children from his second relationship were also at the property.

Chilly started drinking during the afternoon but by 5pm the 10 children were hungry.

She decided to drive to get dinner on what Ms Prior said was the worst road in Melbourne but crashed after hitting a pothole.

Chilly had taken the children with her because being a mother she felt she couldn't leave them in that environment.

Three children were injured in the crash with one suffering a fractured arm, one a fractured leg and one a serious eye injury.

Magistrate Gerard Lethbridge said the case should be dealt with by summary jurisdiction and remanded Chilly on bail for a plea hearing on June 7.

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