A woman on multiple outstanding warrants, who failed to appear in court because she was “staying in a forest that day and couldn’t get out”, has been refused bail.
Danielle Parkinson, 33, of no fixed abode, was stopped at 5.30pm on Saturday driving unregistered on High Street, Trentham, and was arrested on six outstanding warrants.
She appeared in Ballarat Magistrate’s Court on Monday, charged with multiple offences, including drive in a manner dangerous, reckless driving, reckless driving endangering life, and failing to stop following an accident.
The charges relate to multiple incidents, including one at 2.15am on 15 December 2017 when the accused was in a vehicle that was used to allegedly accelerate and ram a police van.
She is also charged with possession of a dangerous weapon, namely two knives, found in her handbag at Loddon Prison, Castlemaine on 10 January 2016, and further charges relating to an incident in Preston on 29 July 2016 when she allegedly drove erratically while talking on a mobile phone and then collided with another car and failed to stop.
Further outstanding warrants relate to an incident on 14 August 2017 at Taylors Lakes where police report the accused was seen driving erratically with her four-year-old son “moving around on the back seat without a seatbelt.”
I was staying in a forest and couldn’t get out that day.Accused's reason for non appearance at court.
The accused allegedly ignored police directions to stop, continuing along Melton Highway on the inside emergency lane and through a red traffic light.
On 24 November 2016, Parkinson was located at 6.31am with her young son in a car, and charged with offences including possession of methamphetamine, after a “crystal-like substance” was allegedly found in her wristband.
The court heard that at 9.09pm on 25 November 2016, the accused was observed driving near Keilor Lakes with false registration plates.
She ignored police directions to pull over and “chose to speed up instead”, “driving at night with no lights, across all lanes of traffic, including a cycling lane” at a recorded speed of 146km in an 80km zone.
It is alleged the accused continued driving at high speed, later colliding with the side of a passenger bus at such a high speed that “a wheel and tyre had sheared off on impact.”
The accused, and a male passenger in the car, had then allegedly fled the scene of the accident.
The accused in making her plea for bail, said, “basically all these charges date back to 2016 and I haven’t touched drugs since I was released from jail (on 11 January 2018). I just want another chance.”
The prosecution strongly opposed bail, saying Parkinson was an “extreme flight risk” and “has an unacceptable risk of re-offending”, a history of drug use and “is likely to endanger her own life, the public in general and other drivers.”
Magistrate Cottrill agreed, saying to the accused, “the only reason you are here in court today is that you were arrested by chance.”
“These are very serious offences and one or two of these driving charges alone will be enough to attract a term of imprisonment.”
Parkinson was remanded to appear on 27 September 2018 at Sunshine Magistrate’s Court.