Drunk driving case: 'Jail sentence will deter would-be offenders'

Drunk driving case: 'Jail sentence will deter would-be offenders'

A Johannesburg couple, whose lives changed when a drunk driver crashed into them in the Durban CBD last year, hopes their case will set an important precedent for sentencing.  

Durban Magistrate's Court
File photo

The crash left 30-year-old electronic engineer Taariqa Archary - a quadriplegic, confined to a wheelchair and in need of round-the-clock care.   

27-year-old Stephan Bothma has pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of alcohol and failing to perform the duties of driver.

After the accident, he sped off to the Upper Highway area, where an off-duty policeman who’d witnessed the crash, arrested him.  

Sentencing proceedings have been underway in the Durban Magistrates Court. 

Archery and her husband agreed that they are eager to close this chapter of their lives but they want jail time. 

Bothma's defence has been arguing for what's become the norm for a first-time offender guilty of drunk driving - a suspended sentence. 

But the Archerys want this sentence to act as a serious deterrent going forward. 

They maintain that if harsher sentences have been meted out in the past - they might not be in the situation today. The case has been adjourned for a ruling later in June. 

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