Drunk, wet man lay on road to warm up

A 52-year-old man lay in the middle of Bluff Highway while highly intoxicated early yesterday morning, telling police he had fallen into a creek and sat on the road because it was warm.

Steven Douglas Thomson appeared before Judge Phil Moran yesterday in the Invercargill District Court for committing a criminal nuisance by doing an unlawful act, namely lying on State Highway 1 knowing such an act would endanger lives. He was convicted and discharged.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Rob Mills said a member of the public called police after she drove off a side street onto Bluff Highway and narrowly missed crashing into Thomson, who was sitting in the middle of the road about 2.15am.

She then watched him lie down on the road and begin rolling in the middle of the southbound lane, he said.

The road has a 70kmh speed limit and Thomson was not easily visible because of his dark clothing and the weather was cloudy and raining, Mr Mills said.

When police arrived about three minutes later, Thomson was lying in the middle of the road highly intoxicated.

Mr Mills said Thomson told police he was too drunk and had got lost before falling in a creek and had then sat on the road because it was warm. He also asked what the problem would be if someone had run him over, he said.

Lawyer Carmen Gillett said he had been to a party and was highly intoxicated. He was sorry he had upset the woman.

The Southland Times