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A woman who crashed her car in a beauty spot in Somerset while drink driving has been banned from the roads for two years.

Police found the 37-year-old woman in the driver’s seat of her car, which was blocking the road at Deer Leap in the Mendip Hills.

Magistrates in Somerset heard that after three failed attempts to complete a roadside breath test, police took the driver into custody where she produced a high alcohol reading.

Prosecuting, Susan Butler told the court that on July 9, police received reports of a car across the road between Priddy and Wookey Hole not long before midnight, and the female driver saying she was unable to start the vehicle.

Police found the car blocking the road having collided with a tree, with the woman in the driver’s seat with the key in the ignition.

“She said she was not the driver of the vehicle and when asked to get out the officer requested a roadside breath test, and although she had three attempts she could not do it,” said Ms Butler.

Police warned the defendant that she would be arrested, and was then taken to Bridgewater Police Station where further tests found her to have 97mcg alcohol per 100ml breath. The legal limit is 35mcg.

“When she was interviewed she confessed she had driven home when she shouldn’t have and crashed her car adding that she had drunk her last drink about 20 minutes before the collision,” said Miss Butler.

“She said she wasn’t sure how the collision occurred but said she didn’t like driving and didn’t always change the gears correctly.

“She did not realise how much she had had to drink and was angry as she would now probably lose her job.

“She also said she was suffering from depression after her relationship had ended and said that lots of things were going wrong in her home life.”

The court also heard that the woman was a much-respected support worker in the area working with people who had suffered brain injuries – the type of which are often caused by car accidents. She would most likely lose her job and home as the result of the inevitable disqualification.

Probation officer Joe Harper explained to the court that on the night of July 9 the defendant had ended up helping out on the bar at Wookey Hole Social Club, having been there herself socially, before the drink driving accident.

“Prior to going there she had been to her ex-partner’s home to drop off a birthday card for her stepson which upset her,” he explained.

“She knows she was drinking while at the club but cannot remember how much and then took the decision to drive believing she was ok to do so. She cannot remember losing control of her car or how she came to crash into a tree.

“She is very remorseful and fully regrets her actions and feels ashamed of herself as she feels she has let so many people down.”

“She now stands to lose her employment and may also have to lose her house and find alternative accommodation,” he added.

Defending his client, Ray Peters explained that his client’s long-term relationship had ended earlier in the year, having a devastating effect on her. She was currently undergoing treatment for depression.

“On this particular day she went to her former partner’s home to take round a birthday card for her stepson and she decided to go to the club where she was asked to work behind the bar,” he said.

“She finished her work and did consume alcohol and then drove home when the accident occurred on a very narrow, single-track lane and she cannot explain why it happened.

“A disqualification will be a particularly onerous burden for her to carry and I would ask the court to take into account her exemplary character.”

Having pleaded guilty to drink driving, Magistrates sentenced the woman to a community order with 100 hours unpaid work, as well as banning her from driving for two years. They also imposed costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £85.

About Freeman & Co.

Freeman & Co. are a specialist firm of road traffic and criminal defence solicitors based in Manchester but with nationwide coverage.

Freeman & Co. specialise in a wide variety of road traffic cases, ranging from drink driving, speeding and mobile phone offences, to name but a few.

The firm was created by Nick Freeman, who has been dubbed “Mr Loophole” by the press for his technical legal ability and robustly challenging the prosecution.

Nick is well regarded as an expert road traffic lawyer and has successfully represented many high profile clients for a variety of motoring offences as well as criminal offences.

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