Grantham court: Motorist takes keys off drink driver

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A driver had her keys taken off her as she drove home after she drank several shots of vodka and wine following an argument with her husband.

Lorraine Mears, 57, of Larch Avenue, Allington Gardens, admitted drink driving on Bottom Road, Allington, on February 13.

Prosecuting, Jim Clare said a motorist driving behind Mears, less than a mile from Allington, noticed the defendant was moving very slowly and a car behind the witness was pipping. The witness noticed grass hanging from the bumper of the car, which was weaving across the road and going up on to the verge. Mears’ car almost came to a stop outside the village. It was there that Mears stuck up a finger at the witness out of her window.

At a junction the witness ran to Mears’ car and asked her if she had been drinking. She said ‘no’. Another motorist appeared and took the keys out of the ignition.

Mears failed a roadside breath test which measured 99 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 microgrammes.

A probation report to the court said Mears had received two rejections that day for jobs she had applied for. She and her husband were worried about money and they had argued. She had three to four shots of vodka and then went out in her car and bought a bottle of wine, drinking several mouthfuls of it before setting off home. She admitted she had a problem with alcohol which started about 18 months ago when she lost her job. She was being assessed by Addaction.

Defending, Sonia Bhalla said: “She is not proud of her actions. She is thoroughly disgusted and ashamed.”

She said Mears had a very sick 71-year-old husband whom she regularly drove to hospital for appointments.

Magistrates gave Mears a 12-month community order to include six months of alcohol treatment. She was disqualified from driving for 24 months which will be reduced by six months if she successfull completes a drink driver’s rehabilitation course. She was also ordered to pay costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £60.