Cathy Freeman's brother jailed

GARTH Freeman, the brother of Sydney Olympic gold medallist Cathy Freeman, was sent to jail on Christmas Eve for his sixth drink-driving offence.

He was caught drink-driving with a reading of 0.275 per cent last Thursday night and was held in custody until he was sentenced on Christmas Eve.

Garth and Cathy Freeman’s brother Norman was killed by a drink-driver in a shocking fatality at Slade Point two years ago.

The fatality led to depression and alcohol abuse by Garth Freeman, who has taken part in two rehabilitation courses since his brother’s death.

His latest offence occurred at 10.40pm on Thursday when police were notified of a possible drink-driver and went to an address in Graffunder Street, South Mackay.

Police saw a white Rodeo dual cab parked on the grass outside a residence, prosecutor Sergeant Sabine Scott said.

Freeman was in the driver’s seat, the keys were in the ignition and the bonnet was hot.

Police woke him up and spoke to him. He said he was just sitting there waiting for a friend to come and let him into the residence. He also said the keys were in the ignition so he could listen to the radio and initially claimed he hadn’t been driving.

His eyes were bloodshot, his speech was slurred, he looked dishevelled and he smelt of liquor.

Freeman admitted consuming about 10 to 15 heavy beers at the Golden Gecko Hotel and Souths Leagues Club between 10.30am and 11pm.

Magistrate Damien Dwyer sentenced him to six months in jail, to be suspended after serving two months, and Freeman was disqualified from driving for three years.

Norman Freeman, a 33-year-old father of four, was a passenger in a car and was killed instantly when it slammed into a parked truck on Slade Point Road on September 16, 2008. The driver had a blood alcohol reading of 0.277 per cent and was a repeat disqualified driver.

Garth Freeman's Track record:

0.275% in December 2010

0.234% in August 2010

0.224% in April 2008

0.131% in 2001

0.111% in 2000

0.136% in 1999



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