A man who was driving erratically on walking paths in Victoria Park during a police pursuit and missed hitting a woman, her pram and dog by half a metre has been sentenced.
Trent Bunney, 29, was sentenced to five months' imprisonment and an 18-month community corrections order at the Ballarat Magistrates' Court on Tuesday.
Magistrate Letizia Torres denounced his 'serious' and 'dangerous' behaviour that put the community at risk.
Bunney pleaded guilty to speeding through an intersection against a red traffic light to evade police on February 17, 2021, causing another car to brake heavily to avoid collision.
He then drove around the grassed area in Victoria Park near Cedar Drive and Poplar Avenue with a trailer attached and along the walking track next to Gillies Street.
A male pedestrian had to move out of the way to avoid being hit and police continued the pursuit.
With your criminal history, if you put the community at risk again there is no option but very long jail terms for you.Magistrate Letizia Torres
Bunney continued driving on the walking track when he narrowly missed hitting the female pedestrian with a pram and dog.
Bunney drove out of Victoria Park and was stopped by police vehicles pulling up in front and behind him.
Bunney was also charged with driving unlicensed, driving an unregistered car, possessing drugs and possessing two knives and blades.
A police summary said it was 'by sheer good fortune' a member of the public was not killed or seriously injured.
Ms Torres said she was disappointed Bunney committed this offending after being released from jail and relapsing into drug use, despite positive support and a stable home environment.
She said Bunney had a 'terrible criminal history'.
Ms Torres said Bunney spent five-and-a-half months in custody last year for charges that were ultimately dismissed, so she was imposing a more lenient sentence taking this into account.
She said the 18-month community corrections order would provide Bunney with support when he was released from prison.
"You need to start preparing yourself to make it work this time around," she said.
"With your criminal history, if you put the community at risk again there is no option but very long jail terms for you."
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