Nine News boss Darren Wick was yesterday sentenced to a nine-month intensive corrections order, banned from driving for nine months and ordered to undertake 100 hours of community service after pleading guilty to a drink driving charge.
He escaped a jail sentence after pleading guilty last year to one count of high-range drink-driving. Wick had a blood alcohol reading of 0.227 after leaving a work function at Nine’s former Willoughby site last October.
The court heard that in 2010 he was sentenced for mid-range drink-driving.
Wick’s solicitor John Sutton told Hornsby Local Court on Wednesday his client effectively worked 24 hours a day, seven days a week, had suffered anxiety over detention of 60 Minutes crew in Beirut and had been faced with the challenges of Nine coverage of bushfires and COVID-19.
Sutton said it might be asked why someone didn’t stop Wick, but magistrate Robyn Denes asked, “Who’s going to stop him? If you think of his role in management, who’s going to stop him?”
Last year Wick told staff in an email he had let them down, adding, “I am taking immediate steps to get help and deal with my problems. I know I need to change my life. I have already begun to get the professional help and advice I know I need,” he said.
He had since checked into the South Pacific Private rehabilitation facility at Curl Curl.
Outside court yesterday he told media, “I’m in a position where I do know better and I should have known better.
“But it comes down to I let an addiction to alcohol get out of control. I didn’t respect it for what it was.
“I made a terrible mistake where I could have harmed others.”