Sarah Paino: Father of crash victim dismisses 'evade police' law changes as 'no deterrent'.


“These kids will just laugh at it, they laugh at the system now.”

By Edith Bevin

Bigger fines for police evaders will not act as a deterrent, according to the father of Hobart mother Sarah Paino, who lost his daughter more than a year ago when a car driven by a 15-year-old joyrider slammed into her vehicle.

Ms Paino, who would have been 26 this month, was killed in the collision with the stolen car being driven by the boy, who was trying to evade police at high speed in the CBD.

The Government has unveiled tough new laws designed to stop such a death happening again.

It is proposing a raft of law changes for police evaders, including raising the maximum jail term from one to two years, and increasing the maximum fine for a third offence to $38,500.

The proposals have been warmly welcomed by the police union, but Ms Paino’s family doubts they would work, and said the Government did not consult them.

Sarah’s father Michael said the minimum jail term for police evaders should be 10 years, and bigger fines were not the answer.

“Who’s going to pay, are these kids going to pay, they don’t have the money, they don’t have the means to pay this money,” he said.

“These kids will just laugh at it, they laugh at the system now.


“I’d like to see [the law changes] go a lot further.”

Mr Paino said law changes would not bring back children to parents, but deterring others was the main goal.

“[These proposed changes] are not going to deter the supidity of these people out there,” he said.

Mr Paino said he believed long jail sentences would work better.

“It you do the crime, you have to do the time,” he said.

“To me, it’s about taking these people off the street, in the sense that if they commit something like this, they are reprimanded in a way that will deter others.

“And that could be that it is jail, jail from day one, not jail after second and third offence.”

Mr Paino said he considered 10 years’ jail appropriate for those offenders who tried to escape from police.

The proposed law changes would increase the maximum fine for a first offence from a $7,700 fine to $15,400, with a maximum disqualification period rising from two years to three years, and a maximum jail time from one to two years.

The penalties would increase for serial offenders, and for third and subsequent offences there would be a maximum fine of $38,500, with licence disqualification rising from two to five years, and jail time jumping from one to two years.


The law changes would also give police the power to arrest on reasonable grounds, meaning they would not have to catch the offender at the time and could arrest them up to 28 days later.

‘Epidemic on our hands’: Police Minister

The teen who killed Ms Paino had run a red light at speed, with the headlights of the stolen car he was driving turned off to evade police.

Ms Pain’s unborn child and two-year-old son survived the crash.

The teen was sentenced to five years detention for manslaughter.

The offender will be eligible for parole next year.

Ms Pain’s death shocked the community and lead to a push for a “Sarah Paino’s law” to deter joyriders.

Police Minister Rene Hidding said the Government had “an epidemic on our hands”.

“Just some years ago there were about 400 known evade police situations; currently we’re running at about 800 a year and that is an epidemic in law enforcement terms,” he said.

The Government said the evade police laws were just part of their plan to clamp down on reckless drivers.

The Sentencing Advisory Council is expected to report to the Attorney-General next month on its review of the current causing death by dangerous driving laws.

This post originally appeared on ABC News.

© 2017 Australian Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved. Read the ABC Disclaimer here