TROUBLED: Craig Roll leaves court.
TROUBLED: Craig Roll leaves court.

Driver's 7km trail of destruction

A MAN who left a trail of destruction across Ipswich after smashing his utility into street signs has been ordered to perform community service.

Craig Alan Roll steamrolled street signs, guide posts and an Australia Post box across seven kilometres of road between West Ipswich and Brassall.

The 33-year-old had an argument with a friend at a Christmas party on November 20. He got into his dual-cab 4WD utility, which was towing a dog cage, and bizarrely ran down the signs.

About 2am Roll was caught on Safe City cameras driving down Brisbane Street at West Ipswich and hitting three ‘keep-left’ signs on the median strip.

Ipswich Magistrate’s Court heard Roll had knocked over another keep-left sign on the median strip of Albion Street, Brassall, and hit a keep-left sign, a 60 sign, a directional sign and a guide post at Fernvale Road.

Roll hit several more signs on roads off the Brisbane Valley Highway and crossed onto the wrong side of the road to smash into a post box – knocking it off its concrete foundation.

An employee at the BP service station on the Warrego Highway at Blacksoil saw Roll driving on the wrong side of the road.

She wrote down Roll’s registration plate number after he came into the shop with bloodshot eyes and called police when she saw media coverage of his rampage.

When police knocked on his front door, Roll showed them his front-page story splashed across The Queensland Times and said he was about to contact them.

Magistrate Donna MacCallum told Roll his dangerous driving could have had fatal consequences.

“It was an incident that was fraught with danger, not only to yourself but to other road users,” Ms MacCallum said.

“You’re very fortunate that no-one was injured or killed by your driving.”

Roll pleaded guilty to dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and three charges of wilful damage.

He was ordered to perform 180 hours of unpaid community service and to repay the damage of $4543.48. Roll’s licence was disqualified for nine months.

Defence lawyer Michael Kelly said his client had experienced a troubled youth and was homeless for six years, but had turned his life around.

Mr Kelly said Roll volunteered with a church that helped homeless people, helped friends who were in Grantham during the floods, and had a good job as a tree lopper until he lost it due to the driving incident.

He said community service would be an appropriate sentence so Roll could give back to the Ipswich people.

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