RTDs plus dad’s car equals crash


A teenager crashed his dad’s car after drinking up to 12 pre-mixed vodkas – then told police he was “just driving around to get some experience”. 

Connor Leslie Paddon, 18, lost control of the car while driving through Lake Hayes Estate at 3am on January 3. 

He spun out on a right-hand bend at Nerin Square, crashing into a fence. 

The young labourer left the scene but police caught up with him at his home a short time later. 

He admitted drinking between six and 12 RTDs and blew 301 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath. 

Under 20s are not allowed under law to drive with any alcohol in their system, while the adult limit is 400mcg. 

Paddon admitted drink-driving and careless driving when he appeared in Queenstown District Court on Tuesday. 

Judge Michael Turner convicted him and remanded him on bail to January 26 for sentence, ordering a reparation report. 

Paddon was one of 12 people in court on a drink-driving charge – including four under 20s. 

That led Turner to ask why they couldn’t understand they shouldn’t be drinking at all before getting behind the wheel. 

Of the other eight, Fernhill man Toby Hilton Welford, 23, had the highest reading – almost twice the limit at 780mcg. 

Welford was sentenced to 80 hours’ community work and disqualified for eight months, after which he’ll only be able to obtain a zero alcohol licence for a period of time. 

Credit card case 

Two Czech tourists charged with dishonestly using a credit card have been remanded on bail. 

Ales Bleha, 29, and Barbora Svobodova, 24, did not enter a plea when they appeared in Queenstown District Court on Tuesday. 

The pair were allegedly caught using the card to book a jetboat ride in Cromwell, 15 minutes after the card was stolen. 

Prosecuting sergeant Ian Collin says reparation of $402 is sought. The tourists are seeking legal advice and have surrendered their passports.