Drink-driver crashed into parked car while four times limit

Suffolk police had made 161 arrests by New Year's Day as part of an annual campaign against drink an

Suffolk police had made 161 arrests by New Year's Day as part of an annual campaign against drink and drug-driving Picture: RACHEL EDGE - Credit: Archant

A drink-driver who crashed her vehicle into a parked car after failing to stop at the scene of an earlier accident has been handed a suspended jail sentence.

Victoria Valembois was four times the drink-drive limit when her Citroen C1 collided with a parked car in High Road, Trimley St Mary, at about 9.30am on the morning of November 23. 

The 41-year-old accountant's car was seen being driven away after knocking the wing mirror off a Renault Luguna 20 minutes earlier.

Valembois, of Cornwall Road, Felixstowe, described her actions as "abhorrent, dangerous and out-of-character" at Suffolk Magistrates' Court on Thursday.

She admitted failing to stop at the scene of an accident and driving with 134 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood - the legal limit being 35mcg.

Prosecutor Wayne Ablett said several hundred pounds worth of damage was caused to vehicles involved in both collisions.

He said Valembois was a woman of previous good character.

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In a pre-sentence report, the probation service said Valembois had been under considerable pressure in the months before the incident, culminating in resignation from her job, and an ill-advised decision to drink and drive. 

The probation service said her normally rational decision making and moderate drinking got out of control, but that Valembois had since abstained from alcohol altogether, and that any risks could be managed in the community.

Sue Threadkell, mitigating, read magistrates a letter, written by Valembois, in which she said: "My biggest regret is getting in that car, and my biggest relief is that I didn't hurt anyone.

"I would like to deal with this mistake, rebuild my reputation and return to some normality.

"I'm truly sorry for my stupid and selfish actions that day."

Valembois was handed a six-week custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months, with 20 days' rehabilitation activity requirement.

She was also banned from driving for 30 months but afforded the opportunity to reduce the disqualification by 30 weeks by completing a drink-drive rehabilitation course.

Magistrates said they had taken into account her remorse and lack of any previous convictions. 

Victoria Valembois was four times the drink-drive limit when her Citroen C1 collided with a parked car in High Road, Trimley St Mary, at about 9.30am on the morning of November 23. 

The 41-year-old accountant's car was seen being driven away after knocking the wing mirror off a Renault Luguna 20 minutes earlier.

Valembois, of Cornwall Road, Felixstowe, described her actions as "abhorrent, dangerous and out-of-character" at Suffolk Magistrates' Court on Thursday.

She admitted failing to stop at the scene of an accident and driving with 134 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood - the legal limit being 35mcg.

Prosecutor Wayne Ablett said several hundred pounds worth of damage was caused to vehicles involved in both collisions.

He said Valembois was a woman of previous good character.

In a pre-sentence report, the probation service said Valembois had been under considerable pressure in the months before the incident, culminating in resignation from her job, and an ill-advised decision to drink and drive. 

The probation service said her normally rational decision making and moderate drinking got out of control, but that Valembois had since abstained from alcohol altogether, and that any risks could be managed in the community.

Sue Threadkell, mitigating, read magistrates a letter, written by Valembois, in which she said: "My biggest regret is getting in that car, and my biggest relief is that I didn't hurt anyone.

"I would like to deal with this mistake, rebuild my reputation and return to some normality.

"I'm truly sorry for my stupid and selfish actions that day."

Valembois was handed a six-week custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months, with 20 days' rehabilitation activity requirement.

She was also banned from driving for 30 months but afforded the opportunity to reduce the disqualification by 30 weeks by completing a drink-drive rehabilitation course.

Magistrates said they had taken into account her remorse and lack of any previous convictions. 

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