April 08, 2009 02:19pm
A HOBART taxi driver was feeling tired and unwell when he ran over a drunk customer, a court has heard.
The incident followed an argument over money, the Supreme Court in Hobart heard today.
Self-employed taxi driver James Carlisle, 52, admitted hitting Alan Garner with his taxi on May 23 last year.
Mr Garner, 48, and a friend got into Carlisle's cab in Salamanca about 10pm after a night of drinking.
Mr Garner asked to be taken to Brighton and Carlisle demanded a $50 deposit, which was given.
The court heard there was a continuing argument over the need for a deposit, even though it had been provided.
Crown prosecutor Jane Williams said Mr Garner became fed up and decided to get another taxi.
Carlisle pulled over and gave the $50 back.
Ms Williams said Mr Garner hit Carlisle to the face with the back of his hand and threw $10 at him before getting out.
Carlisle's lawyer Craig Mackie said the "slap" was more like a punch, which broke Carlisle's glasses and gave him a headache.
Carlisle called police and then drove a short distance, before doing a u-turn and driving at Mr Garner.
The court heard Mr Garner suffered serious injuries and needed to have pins inserted into his leg.
Carlisle pleaded guilty to one count of causing grievous bodily harm.
Mr Mackie said the taxi driver was very unwell at the time of the attack, as he suffered from diabetes.
He was also tired, having started work at 9am.
Carlisle will be sentenced later this month.