Pictured: Eric Thomas, also known as Gable Tostee
A Tinder lothario who was found naked and covered in blood in his wrecked car after smashing into a concrete barrier claims he has no memory of the crash because he was sleep-driving.
Eric Thomas, whose birth name is Gable Tostee, was banned from driving for a year by the Brisbane Magistrates Court on Wednesday after the dramatic accident on the Gold Coast in October last year.
Witnesses told police the 35-year-old’s car drifted across the road, hit a cement blockade, and cut across another vehicle, before ploughing into bushes.
When emergency services arrived, Thomas had bloodshot eyes, a dry mouth, slurred speech and was unsteady on his feet – but refused to do a breath test and would not consent to a blood sample after being taken to hospital.
Thomas told the court he consumed alcohol and prescription medication for anxiety and insomnia that evening, but had no recollection of getting into his car.
He doubled down on those claims in an impassioned Facebook post on Sunday morning, which he began by asking followers to put themselves in his shoes.
Eric Thomas, who was previously known as Gable Tostee, was found naked in his car after crashing into a barrier in October last year
He wrote an impassioned post on Sunday morning claiming he was sleep-driving before the accident (pictured)
‘Imagine having a totally clean driving record for over seven years straight then one day you go to bed,’ he wrote.
‘The next thing you know you wake up in hospital with a broken foot, concussion, covered in blood, and being charged by cops with no idea how you got there and no recollection of what happened, how or why.’
‘Just like that, you’ve lost your car, your ability to work, and any meaningful degree of independence, and on top of that, you’re facing punishment and shame for something you didn’t voluntarily do.’
In court on Wednesday, the magistrate heard Thomas had a 2011 conviction for dangerous operation of a vehicle while adversely affected by alcohol, and three for driving under the influence in 2004, 2012, and 2015.
Following the crash in October, officers found an alcometer and empty bottles of mouthwash in his wrecked vehicle.
Eric Thomas said he struggled to find the moral of the accident, but later decided that he does not have control over ‘what life chooses’ to inflict upon him
Thomas lost his license on Wednesday. The day after his court hearing, he said: ‘licence lost is a licence to drink’
In the post, Thomas said he struggled to find a moral, a silver lining, or anything positive about the most recent situation, and claimed he put a lot of effort into staying safe and doing the ‘right thing’.
‘If life has taught me nothing else, it’s that s**t truly does happen,’ he continued.
‘We do not have the control or choice over our outcomes that we like to believe – no more than we choose our height or hair colour.’
In a philosophical end to the lengthy post, Thomas decided not to focus on the ‘choices we should make’, but rather ‘how we deal with what life chooses for us’.
Thomas had his driving under the influence of liquor charge dropped, but pleaded guilty refusing to supply both a specimen of breath and blood – for which he was ordered to serve 12 months on probation and fined $350.
When one woman asked in the comments whether Thomas was trying to say that he was sleep-driving before the accident, he replied: ‘Yes.’
‘I even did not want to plead guilty. But sadly (and for good reason otherwise), it’d have been totally impossible to prove I didn’t put myself into such a state,’ he continued.
Thomas (pictured) refused to give a breath sample at the scene after the crash and would not give consent to giving blood after being taken to hospital in an ambulance
His lawyer Nick Dore told the court on Wednesday that Thomas recalled consuming alcohol and medication on the evening of the smash.
‘The next thing he recalls is he wakes up at the scene of the crash in the ambulance being spoken to by the police,’ he said.
He had vague recollections of waking up the next morning, but no recollection of refusing to give a blood sample and saying ‘charge me’ to police.
Mr Dore said Thomas was ‘exceptionally remorseful and sorry for the offending and embarrassed in relation to it’.
Magistrate Linda Bradford-Morgan acknowledged his previous driving offences, but said the latest one was a ‘spectacular limit’.
‘People often use alcohol and drugs as a coping mechanism, you need to keep on top of your mental health management plan and get that additional support to make sure you are not back in court,’ she told Thomas during sentencing.
Thomas, under the name of Tostee, was acquitted of murdering New Zealand tourist Warriena Wright (pictured together) who died when she fell from the 14th floor balcony of his apartment in August 2014
‘You were very fortunate that you were not more seriously injured and didn’t injure anyone else.’
On Thursday, the day after his court appearance, he wrote a bizarre Facebook post that said ‘licence lost is a licence to drink’ with the hashtags: ‘#brightside,’ ‘#glasshalffull’ and ‘#Glasgow’.
Thomas, under the name of Tostee, was acquitted of murdering New Zealand tourist Warriena Wright, whom he met on Tinder.
She died when she fell from the 14th floor balcony of his apartment in August 2014.
He was also embroiled in another online flame war, this time with a Pilates studio, in May last year after its owner told him to ‘get off Bumble and Tinder, you f**k’.
Mr Tostee and his friends responded by flooding her business with bad reviews.