Police catch seven-year-old boy driving drunken father home
Police in the Surfer's Paradise area on Australia's Gold Coast caught a seven-year-old boy driving his drunken father back to the hotel they were staying at in the small hours of the morning earlier this year.
Officials stopped a car they spotted travelling down the road with no lights on at 3am only to find Peter Sivewright drunk in the front passenger seat and his son sobbing hysterically behind the wheel.
The youngster told police: "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, please don't take me and my dad to jail."
Police pulled over the car after spotting "a small person behind the wheel" and a lack of lights on June 21. Sivewright, 42, who was found to be four times the drink drive limit, was banned from driving for 21 months after pleading guilty to dangerously operating a car and drink-driving.
Police prosecutor Bob Falconer said officers were shocked to find a young boy crying in the driver's seat but Sivewright was spared jail time due to a psychological report detailing that he had suffered the loss of his wife, parents, grandmother and several friends in the months prior to his arrest, leading to an alcohol problem.
Magistrate Paul Johnstone was quoted by the Gladstone Observer as saying: "I accept...within a short period of time you have been devastated and traumatised by the loss of your wife, both parents, grandmother and several close friends... and this had led you on a downward spiral into alcoholism."
The Brisbane Times reported that as a condition of his sentence, the father must attend counselling and must return a negative reading for any random breath tests for the term of his two-year probation.