Last reprieve as grown men cry in court
RUNNING out of nappies was not a good enough excuse for a single father sentenced to jail in Gympie Magistrates Court on Thursday for repeat disqualified driving.
Grown men shed tears and one appeared to sob as Bradley James Cobb faced prison and the prospect of having to abandon his 18-month old daughter.
Cobb told the court he had sole custody.
Magistrate Graham Hillan noted that Cobb, who asked for a large fine instead of jail, had been previously jailed, including for a similar offence in Hervey Bay, before his daughter was born.
"But I've got my little girl to look after,” Cobb said.
"You should have thought of that before,” Mr Hillan said, after hearing that Cobb's excuse for driving in Rocks Rd, near Scrubby Creek Rd, was that he had to buy more nappies.
"There are going to be some severe consequences here today,” he said.
One of two men supporting Cobb in the public gallery appeared to sob during the exchange and remonstrated with the prosecutor, who had asked that Cobb be jailed, after previous convictions.
Cobb pleaded guilty to disqualified driving in an unregistered and uninsured car with false plates on February 16.
"I don't think you understand the severity of the charge,” Mr Hillan said.
Referring Cobb's record, Mr Hillan said: "the one in 2014 at Hervey Bay, you got two months jail and two years disqualification.
"On another charge in Hervey Bay you got six months jail. Then today you say, 'How about a fine?'
"You're not learning,” he told Cobb, 26 of The Palms.
He sentenced Cobb to eight months jail for the disqualified driving charge and fined him $1400 for doing so in an unregistered and uninsured vehicle with false plates.
Mr Hallan then released Cobb on immediate parole, prompting audible sighs from the gallery.
"I'm being very lenient, because you should be doing time,” Mr Hilland said. "I impress on you the need to obey court orders, because we do not make them for fun.
"I consider this to be your lucky day,” the magistrate said.