I'm prepared to hold back on the stream of hateful vitriol that's bubbling away inside me. I am thus because I doubt he will see the mercy of the law. Its quality is likely to be finely strained indeed.
A couple of weeks back, seeking inspiration as I waited on my job offers, I walked into a random hearing in the Victorian Court of Appeal. The case I heard argued before the 3 judges involved an appeal by the prosecutors against a sentence for culpable driving that they said was manifestly inadequate.
That offender was just 18 at the time, with one driving prior. The victims in that case had both voluntarily got into the car with the intoxicated driver, and the girl who died most likely didn't have a seatbelt on. That offender suffered significant injuries himself in the accident.
The alleged offender in Mildura is 35 and the 6 victims in no way chose to share risk with him. He also put his own kids, especially his son, at risk.
Here's what the judges said in the Court of Appeal:
Whereas sentences of less than five years for culpable driving were once not uncommon, today such a sentence is a relative rarity, except perhaps where one is concerned with a first-time offender and the death of the victim has been more the consequence of bad luck than out and out stupidity.
That offender had his sentence increased from 3 years to 6, with a non parole of 3.5.
The Mildura accused may get some relief because he has kids to look after, and if he has no priors that could help as well. But 'out and out stupidity' sounds like a very good description of what we've heard so far, and I'd personally be banking on 7 or 8 years, with at least 4 behind bars, for this sad fool who's ruined so many lives.