Driver damaged school by $12,000

By Michael Roberts | posted on June 20, 2020

AN ALBANY woman who caused more than $12,000 worth of damage to a local high school has been put on a community based order for eight months and had her licence disqualified for six months.

Facing the Albany Magistrate Court on Thursday, Brianna Rochelle Boucher pleaded guilty to one count of damaging property and one count of reckless driving Prosecuting Sergeant Dave Loverock told the court Ms Boucher did burnouts with a Holden Colorado on the front lawn of Albany Senior High School just after 11pm on October 26.

While tearing up the grassed area, Ms Boucher hit a bin and fire hydrant that then flooded one of the school’s classrooms.

When Ms Boucher hit the fire hydrant, a number plate fell off the car and police were able to quickly track the vehicle down.

In a statement to police, the 23-year-old admitted to driving the Holden, saying she was angry with her boyfriend at the time.

Defence lawyer Janie Gibbs said Ms Boucher’s recollection of the incident was hazy because she had been drinking beforehand.

“She recalls having a fight with her ex-partner,” she said.

With no previous criminal convictions, Ms Gibbs described Ms Boucher’s actions “as out of character”.
“She appreciates the seriousness for harm, injury and death,” she said.

“As a mother of a four- year-old child, if something like that had happened at her son’s school she said she would be extremely upset and disgusted at that person’s behaviour.”

Ms Gibbs said Ms Boucher hadn’t consumed alcohol since the night of the incident.

In handing down the court’s sentence, Magistrate Raelene Johnston said it was concerning Ms Boucher was driving under the influence.

“These are very serious matters. You impacted on the running of the school, which has real potential to impact on individual students and the morale of people who work there. Schools are easy targets,” she said.

For damaging the high school, Ms Boucher received a spent conviction and was placed on a community based order for eight months.

Her licence was also disqualified for six months for the reckless driving charge and will remain on the public record.