An off-duty WA police officer who caused a drunken crash that injured a nine-year-old girl has received a suspended jail term and an $800 fine.
- Lachlan Perhavec was drunk when he caused a multi-car crash in 2019
- A total of 16 people, including a 9-year-old girl, were injured in the pileup
- Perhavec was sacked from the WA Police Force as a result of the crash
In August last year Lachlan Thomas Perhavec was a detective constable in the Serious and Organised Crime Division of the WA Police Force when he drove at 20 kilometres per hour above the speed limit into a roundabout near Perth Airport.
He was recorded by CCTV cameras drifting from the right-hand lane into the left lane before hitting a van carrying 11 people, including the young girl who was asleep.
The collision started a chain reaction of crashes, with the van hitting the wagon in front of it, and the wagon then smashing into the back of the another car.
A total of 16 people were in the three vehicles but only the young girl, who suffered a spinal injury, was seriously hurt.
Perhavec, 28, left the scene but did return twice to collect belongings from his car and to take photographs of the damage to it.
He was found one hour and 45 minutes later in bushes.
The Perth Magistrates Court was told Perhavec’s blood alcohol level at the time of the crash was estimated to be 0.073 per cent.
Following the incident he was sacked from the WA Police Force.
The court ordered his driver’s licence suspended for three years.
‘I’m sorry’: Former police officer now tending bar
Outside court, Perhavec apologised to the girl he injured and his former police colleagues.
“Obviously, I made some very bad decisions that night and I never intended for anyone to get hurt, and for that I’m sorry,” he said.
“I’d also like to apologise to the commissioner of the police, and all the other police officers in general.
“Incidents like this obviously cause quite a negative light to be cast on the police and having been a police officer for almost nine years, I know there’s a lot of good work they do.”
When asked about his current employment, he said he had been doing “casual bar work”.
“I would have loved to have stayed a police officer for my life, it’s a great job and there’s a lot of good people doing a lot of good work there,” Perhavec said.
“Don’t drink and drive, it’s not worth it.”
Magistrate says Perhavec was ‘clearly looking after himself’
Deputy Chief Magistrate Elizabeth Woods said the most concerning aspect of the offending was that Perhavec left the scene.
She said it may be explained by him suffering some sort of concussion injury, which a doctor had suggested, or because he thought that was his only option given he had been drinking.
“He was clearly looking after himself … clearly he did not stay at the scene and render assistance, as one would expect” she said.
“It was a significant choice for him to make, significant in terms of the outcome of the matter.”
Ms Woods said it was fortunate only one person was injured and that she was expected to make a full recovery.