Ipswich/Trimley: 62-year-old drink-driver Theresa Hallett weaved across road while nearly three times the limit

Drink-driver banned

Drink-driver banned - Credit: PA

A 62-year-old Trimley woman has been banned from driving after going out to fill up with petrol at night while nearly three times the drink-drive limit.

An off-duty police community support officer (PCSO) drove after Theresa Hallett, of Old Kirton Road, Trimley St Martin after seeing her car weaving along the old Felixstowe Road as she drove towards Ipswich.

Hallett pleaded guilty to driving when above the legal alcohol limit when she appeared before South East Suffolk Magistrates Court.

Prosecutor David Bryant said the offence occurred at around 11.30pm on August 20.

The PCSO saw a Peugeot weaving from side to side as it travelled towards Ipswich.

He followed the vehicle, indicating his presence by flashing the headlights on his car.

At first the Peugeot did not pull over. However, the PCSO then drove alongside the car and shouted to the driver.

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The Peugeot came to a halt and went the officer spoke to Hallett it was evident she had been drinking, the court heard.

Police were called and conducted a positive roadside breath test.

A further breath test at Martlesham’s police investigation centre showed Hallett had 97 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 mcgs.

Mr Bryant said Hallett told police she had consumed two large glasses of wine two hours before the breath test and was driving to Sainsbury’s petrol station in Purdis Heath to fill up her car.

She said she thought she would be ok to drive.

Hallett, who works in the education system, told officers she had not originally stopped for the PCSO because she did not know who he was and it was not until he pulled alongside and shouted that she realised.

Sue Threadkell, representing Hallett, said: “Sadly Miss Hallett has had issues with alcohol in the past and at this stage they threatened to get the better of her.

“She’s taken this very much as a wake-up call.”

Describing Hallett’s decision to drive after drinking Mrs Threadkell said: “A foolish decision was taken to go and fill up the car with petrol – something she didn’t need to do.”

Magistrates sentenced Hallett to a one-year community order with 80 hours of unpaid work. She was banned from driving for 24 months and must pay costs and a victim surcharge totalling £145.