A COPY of the front page story from the July 12 edition of the Daily Liberal was submitted as part of defence evidence when Caroline Sidoti appeared in Dubbo Local Court on a charge of failing to give way at a roundabout.
The story, headlined Slip 'n' Slide and illustrated by photographs of swiftly-flowing floodwater, told how heavy rain had contributed to four accidents in and around Dubbo.
The newspaper described a crash at the intersection of Cobborah Road and Fitzroy Street between a Suzuki sedan driven by Sidoti and a Holden Commodore.
Police said Sidoti failed to give way to the Holden, causing the driver to brake harshly and collide with the Suzuki
The court heard Sidoti, 61, had held a driver's licence since 1981. Since her retirement from the state public service she had been widely involved in a number of charitable community organisations.
The solicitor representing Sidoti said she had been shopping prior to the collision.
"She waited 45 minutes for heavy rain to clear,'' the solicitor said. "(At the time of the collision) she was travelling at about 5km/h due to the wet conditions.''
Magistrate Eckhold said the maximum fine for the offence was $2200. After considering Sidoti's good character and history he elected to dismiss the charge without conviction. Sidoti was ordered to pay $83 court costs.