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Tears as accused slammed by magistrate

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Max Dennison Photo - Helen Tatchell
Max Dennison Photo - Helen Tatchell

By Jessica Howard

An unlicensed driver who crashed a motorcycle into a Bacchus Marsh pedestrian crossing after doing burnouts has been refused bail.

Max Dennison broke down crying in court on Friday (February 17) after Magistrate Gregory Robinson denied his bail application, stating that the 20-year-old accused was “an unacceptable risk to the community”.

Dennison is alleged to have sped down the Main Street of Bacchus Marsh on an unregistered motorcycle at around 6:15pm on January 31.

He was observed doing a burn out for approximately 38-metres before losing control of the motorbike and landing on the ground, taking a chunk of concrete out of the Main Street pedestrian crossing, the court heard.

He then proceeded to get back on the bike and do a second burnout for over 60-metres.

Bacchus Marsh Leading Senior Constable, Yvette Brown said there was a very large people presence at the time, with other vehicles being forced to stop in order to avoid an accident.

Dennison was already on two counts of bail for other matters, including the alleged theft of a $500 chainsaw from the Parwan Fire Station, assault and various driving offences.

In one matter, which occurred on September 30 last year, Dennison is alleged to have followed a victim to their residential street in Melton and, armed with a baseball bat, he demanded money.

The victim, who did not have any cash at the time, ran inside the house before Dennison proceeded to smash the back of the victim’s vehicle with the bat.

On a separate occasion, the accused was allegedly observed “fishtailing” in a vehicle before travelling past the Bacchus Marsh Shell Service Station at 70-80k/h in a 50k/h zone.

Leading Senior Constable Brown said the incident occurred at around 4pm on August 10 and was within the vicinity of a kindergarten, skate park and shopping centre in Bennett Street.

Brown told Magistrate Robinson that Dennison’s bail application was heavily opposed, stating that the accused had a “total disregard for the rules”.

“The offending has occurred over a 12-or-so-month period. His parent’s address [where he resides] is a target spot for police due to his constant erratic driving and complaints from neighbours.

“His parents know of his behaviour, but do not recognise the problem. He doesn’t care, he gets in the car or onto a bike and he drives like a maniac.

“He is not remorseful, he has never made any admissions and only appears to be remorseful now that he is in court. He will leave here today and he will be driving tonight, putting people at risk”.

Dennison’s mother, Rachel took to the witness stand, stating that she believed her son deserved a second chance.

“Max can be a good kid, he has a chance to prove himself and we are happy to help anyway we can as his family and as his friends,” she said.

Dennison’s defence, Mr Warehan said his client was still a young adult who had viewed his first time in custody as a “life changing experience”.

“[Dennison] has been on remand for two-weeks and he now knows what happens if he doesn’t abide by the rules. There is a clear court demeanour that he has found the experience both confronting and difficult, and he is desperate to get out,” he said.

Mr Warehan said that, if released, his client would abide by a curfew and reside in a stable home with his family.

Magistrate Robinson said considering the seriousness of the offending, the bail application was denied.

“To show off by doing burnouts in the Main Street, he was putting his and his friend’s lives at risk,” he said.

“This offending has occurred over a 12-month period, which shows that he has no regard for the police or the rules and that is a concern. He is an unacceptable risk to the community”.

Dennison will reappear in court on April 7.