By Colin Adwent Crime correspondent
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
A DRINK-driving police constable should have lost his liberty as well as his licence, according to the mother of a Suffolk man killed by a drink-driver.
Matthew Stott now faces the prospect of losing his job after admitting driving with excess alcohol when he appeared before Norwich Magistrates’ Court. He has been suspended on full pay since September last year.
The 45-year-old, of Kingfisher Way, Stowmarket, had refused to pull over as two police cars pursued his Volvo on the A14 on September 22, claiming he thought it was “former colleagues playing a prank”.
Stott - who was convicted of speeding at 100mph in 2009 - was banned from driving for 12 months and now faces a Suffolk Constabulary disciplinary hearing.
However Jayne Jones, whose 20-year-old son Aiden was killed by a drink-driver in a crash in 2009, believes Stott should have been jailed.
Mrs Jones, of Stowmarket, said: “He should lose his job and I would like to have seen him put behind bars, because I think all drink-drivers should be.
“He is a man of the law. His job is to stop people like the man who killed our son, and he was doing the same thing by drinking and driving.”
During yesterday’s hearing prosecutor Oliver Haswell said Stott’s passenger had repeatedly told him “just stop” as cars with flashing lights chased him after spotting a defective rear light.
The cars attempted a “boxing in” manoeuvre to force him to stop, but had to abort this when it became clear he would not stop and the public may be at risk.
Mr Haswell added Stott panicked and told his female passenger: “My job, my job, I’m going to lose everything, and I’ve only got six years left.”
He eventually reached his home where he was breath-tested.
Stott had originally intended to fight the charge claiming the breathalyser was faulty and officers had not followed correct procedures.
Stott’s breath test showed he had 44 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35mcgs.
Heather Oliver, mitigating, said Stott had “parlous” finances and his 24-year career was now “effectively over”.
District judge Peter Veits banned Stott for 12 months and ordered him to pay a fine and legal costs totalling £1,115.
Following his speeding conviction in 2009 Ipswich magistrates put six penalty points on his licence and ordered him to pay fines and costs totalling £420.
After yesterday’s hearing Superintendent Louisa Pepper of the Suffolk and Norfolk Professional Standards Department said: “Matthew Stott was suspended from his role as a serving police officer after his arrest and charge for drink-driving.
“Following his guilty plea Suffolk Constabulary’s Professional Standards Department will look at what additional action may now be taken against him.”