Meth mum jailed for 200kmh drive killing husband, son
SOMETIMES it is the innocent who pay the highest price for the careless actions of others.
And this was the case for Mt Morgan's Jamie Tull, 41, and his son Declan Tull, 5 who died after being ejected from a car being driven more than 171km/h at Kolonga, north of Gin Gin in September 2017.
Both were not wearing seatbelts, and Declan was found naked with no child-restraint seat for him to sit in. Both suffered "massive and horrific injuries".
Tragically, the person behind the wheel on that morning was someone both victims should have been able to trust - Mr Tull's wife and Declan's mother, Connie-Lee Williams.
Yesterday, Williams stood silently in the dock of Bundaberg District Court with almost every space in the two rows of gallery seats taken.
And the division of a family once whole was unmistakable, with extra police on stand-by.
They all heard Williams plead guilty to dangerous operation of a vehicle causing death, under the influence of an intoxicating substance and excessive speeding on that fateful day.
Crown Prosecutor Christopher Cook said Williams, 34, had visited Mr Tull's father, Bevan Tull on the day, and asked to borrow his Holden Commodore station wagon.
And while Mr Cook said it was unknown where the family was driving to that day, they started at Mount Morgan.
Mr Cook told of five witnesses who saw Williams "dangerous driving" on the Bruce Hwy, with one saying she passed them at between 180km/h and 200km/h.
He said one witness recalled, "I heard a roar ... it sounded like a jet plane" as Williams overtook and crossed double white lines.
He said while the two victims weren't wearing a seatbelt, Williams was and the "air bag may have saved her". She suffered from a fractured C6 vertebrae and sternum.
Police found 1.65gm of meth in her belongings and a blood test came back positive for the drug.
Mr Cook said since the crash, Williams had purchased a $66,000 car and condemned her action, saying she should be focusing on "other things, like her remaining kids".
"Ms Williams said peculiar things on scene (to first responders) ... no doubt she was distressed, but she was significantly affected by meth," he said.
"(She was) speeding excessively, significantly affected by meth and aware her passengers were not restrained.
"This is approaching or in the worst category for this charge."
Judge Tony Moynihan noted Williams had told first responders she "wanted to go to heaven with her husband and son" and the purchase of the car may have been for "psychological reasons".
A psychologist report noted Williams said she felt she did "all the running around because Jamie was 'too lazy'".
Defence barrister Russell Clutterbuck said his client had demonstrated contrition, and was awaiting a further psychology report on a suspected head trauma injury.
Judge Moynihan sentenced Williams to nine years jail.
He declared it a serious violent offence, due to "the distance of the driving, dangerous manoeuvrers, number of innocent people exposed to danger, allowing your son to be unrestrained, and deliberate and reckless conduct".
"The two victims paid the ultimate price," the judge said.
Williams must serve at least 80 per cent of the sentence before she can apply for parole.