Third time drink driver banned

A THIRD time drink driver who flagged down an off duty police officer for help when she ran out of petrol has been banned from the roads for two years.

A THIRD time drink driver who flagged down an off duty police officer for help when she ran out of petrol has been banned from the roads for two years.

Patricia Shaw was more than three times the legal limit when she set out to pick up her daughter from a shopping trip and ran out of petrol on the A1071 at Hintlesham.

Shaw who has two previous convictions from 1996 and 2001 originally claimed she was not driving the car but later admitted drinking with excess alcohol in her system.

South East Suffolk magistrates sitting in Ipswich heard how the police officer had spotted Shaw of Calais Street, Hadleigh on the side of the A1071 at Hintlesham at around 7.15pm on December 1.

Godfried Duah, prosecuting said: “As an off duty police officer drove along the A1071 he came across a Suzuki Jeep which had broken down.

“By the vehicle was a woman (Shaw) who was waving her arms around.”

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Mr Duah said the police officer stopped to see if he could help and Shaw told him she had run out of petrol but her partner had gone to get some.

He said: “He realised she smelt of alcohol and radioed to get other officers at the scene.

“She was heard saying 'You prat. I told you I haven't been drinking.'”

A breath test showed she had 111 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35migrograms.

Sharon Hector, mitigating, told magistrates sitting in Ipswich that Shaw had no intention to drive but had to collect her daughter from a shopping trip. She had been supposed to be getting a lift home from someone else.

Ms Hector said: “However her daughter phoned her and asked for a lift home. At first she refused saying she had been drinking but when her daughter phoned again she reluctantly agreed to go and collect her.

“On route she realises she hasn't got enough petrol to get there.

“She does like to drink and although doesn't drink every day she drinks on her days off from work.

“She sometimes drinks more than she should do but doesn't think she has a drink problem.”

Shaw, of Calais Street, Hadleigh, was disqualified from driving for 48 months, given a community order of 24 months, made to attend a drink drivers program, fined £100 and made to pay £55 court costs.

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