A 35-year-old disqualified driver was refused bail in the ACT Magistrates Court after he was found slumped over the steering wheel of his car in the McDonald's drive-through in Conder on Friday night, with a six-year-old child alongside in the passenger seat.
Police were called to the location around 11.10pm on Friday where they found the driver "not responding to verbal or physical stimuli".
They also observed a child around six years old asleep in the passenger's seat, secured only by a lap-sash belt. Road transport regulations require that a child of that age be restrained in the rear seat in a bolster seat or an approved child restraint.
In the tendered statement of facts, when roused the defendant was described by police as having "slurred speech and slow movement".
Further investigations revealed that the driver had been disqualified from driving in October 2020 for a period of two years.
A search by police of the man located a small quantity of what was suspected to be methylamphetamine contained in a clipseal bag in his tracksuit pocket.
Legal Aid defence lawyer Hugh Jorgensen told Special Magistrate Jane Campbell that he had been advised that the man had been driving the child to a friend's place as a favour.
The driver was said to be have gone "cold turkey" on his heroin addiction, was in the fifth day of his withdrawal, had trouble sleeping and was "simply exhausted".
However, Special Magistrate Campbell said putting the young child in such danger constituted a "significant incident" and that the driver had "complete disregard for orders regarding his licence".
"I can't think of any bail condition which would ameliorate the risks of him driving again whilst disqualified," she said.
The man was remanded in custody to appear again on May 10.
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