Jagerbomb drinking soldier Marcus Hook was told he would be given the minimum disqualification allowable because magistrates “appreciate what you are doing with the British Army”.
The court heard Hook, of Ivy Close, Bournemouth, but stationed at Kendrew Barracks, Oakham, went drinking in Grantham town centre and downed eight or nine Jagerbombs - a shot of Jägermeister dropped into beer or Red Bull - before getting behind the wheel.
Two members of the public reported Hook to the police for drink driving. The first called at 4.44am when he was first seen getting behind the wheel and giving a lift to friends. The second called at 4.49am after he stopped off at a petrol station in Grantham and asked to use the toilet.
Police found Hook, an infantry soldier with the 2nd Royal Anglians, parked in Halfords’ car park in London Road. He was found to have 83 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35.
Rory Macmillan, defending Hook, said: “He realised he was making a bad mistake and stopped in Halfords’ car park. They had phoned a taxi that they were waiting for when the police arrived.”
Hook was accompanied into court by his Commanding Officer and a written character reference was handed in from Captain Wright. The court heard Hook would be censured by the army for his actions and it would remain on his disciplinary record indefinitely.
Mr Macmillan said: “He is very sorry for his misjudgment and I think I can say that it was completely out of character, which is supported by Captain Wright.”
Hook, 21, was disqualified from driving for a year and fined £280. He must also pay costs of £85 and a £28 surcharge.
Chair of magistrates Mr Stewart said: “We appreciate what you are doing with the British Army, therefore you will be banned for the minimum, 12 months.
“This is the minimum because of the work you are undertaking with the British Army and the best of luck with that.”