L-plater fined $1600 for ‘non-essential travel’

The teen's mum has called the move 'ridiculous'

The mum of a 17-year-old L-plater who was fined more than $1600 for ‘non-essential travel’ has slammed the Victorian police for their decision, calling the move ‘ridiculous’.

Speaking to 3AW‘s Neil Mitchell, Sharee Reynolds called the radio station to discuss her daughter’s fine after the pair went for a driving lesson over the weekend.

The pair were driving from their home in Hampton to Frankston when they were pulled over by police.

‘We didn’t think for one minute that we would be doing anything wrong,’ she told the radio host.

‘We weren’t in contact with any person, we weren’t stopping anywhere, we weren’t planning on visiting any destination.’

However, the police officer that pulled the pair over allegedly informed the women that they were ‘too far from home’ and would receive a fine. 

A copy of the fine obtained by the radio station shows that the total amount was $1652.

Sharee told the radio host she felt that a warning would have had the same impact, adding that she felt shocked by the incident.

‘I don’t feel like it was the right thing to do. Giving a fine to a 17-year-old is really quite ridiculous. I honestly didn’t think what we were doing was incorrect,’ she said.

Update: Following outrage from the community, the Victorian Police have since withdrawn the girl’s fine. 

Deputy Commissioner Shane Patton revealed that while the fine was legally issued, it had been withdrawn because there was confusion within the community about whether driving lessons were allowed.

‘The Chief Health Officer has made it clear that undertaking driving practice in the current climate is not an essential activity, unless the learner driver is gaining driving practice in line with one of the four exemptions,’ he said.

These include driving to purchase food or supplies and when travelling to work or education.

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