Wednesday 8 February 2023 | Written by Al Williams | Published in Court, Crime, National
Tihau Bakoauea had entered guilty pleas to excess breath alcohol, found dunk in a public place, used profane, indecent and obscene language within the hearing of any person in a public place, and common assault, when she appeared in the Criminal Court on November 10.
While she failed to turn up for sentencing on December 20, Bakoauea made an appearance in the Criminal Court on Tuesday.
The court heard Bakoauea, a shop assistant in Muri, had been drinking heavily on September 29 when a tailing motorist tried to indicate her to pull over.
Defence lawyer Norman George said she “came out of the car fiery”.
Obscene language was used and police were called to the scene.
George said he accepted sentencing recommendations but asked the court to convict and discharge her for obscene language.
“She is otherwise a fine lady of Kiribati, she is working hard to become a PR (Permanent Resident).
“She is law abiding and decent.”
Justice of the Peace John Whitta said Bakoauea was driving with 154 mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood.
“You almost drove into a wall.
“You crossed a centre line and narrowly missed an oncoming vehicle<’ JP Whitta told her.
“Someone behind you tried to attract your attention, you gave some offensive gestures.”
When Bakoauea stopped the vehicle, she was seen by witnesses in possession of alcohol and yelling obscenities.
“You removed the keys from their car, you abused police and were uncooperative with police.”
JP Whitta said she had lived in the Cook Islands for five years.
“Your offending could have been more serious; the incident could have had a much worse outcome.
“The complainant may be the reason the offender is not facing more serious charges.”
She reported have a “bad day” on the day of the offence, but that was not an excuse, JP Whitta said.
“I did consider prison for a short time; this could have ended much worse.
“Bear in mind the possible consequences; all of this might have ended quite differently.
“It is quite possible you have a difficult relationship with alcohol.”
He said the victim was instrumental in pulling her over and that person had to be commended.
She was sentenced to 12 months of probation and ordered not to purchase alcohol or enter licenced premises, ordered to pay $150 for the blood test and $50 court costs.
She was disqualified from driving for 12 months.
She was convicted and discharged for being found dunk in a public place, using profane, indecent and obscene language within the hearing of any person in a public place, and common assault, and ordered her to pay $50 court costs.
“Put it behind you, I never want to see you in court again.”