A DRINK-driver who smashed into three cars in a hit-and-run spree was arrested after police followed a trail of destruction to his door.
The officers found Michael Hindmarsh’s BMW abandoned, unlocked and with steam coming from the engine and a front wheel hanging off in the back lane of Collingwood Street, Chichester, South Shields.
When they knocked on the nearest door, the 22-year-old answered, smelling of booze and with blood running down his face.
He was arrested, and a breath test showed he had 57mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath – the legal limit is 35mg.
Hindmarsh, who now lives in Copse Close, Immingham, Humberside, pleaded guilty to drink-driving and three counts of failing to stop after an accident.
Magistrates banned the delivery driver – who will now lose his job – from the roads for 15 months, fined him £400 and ordered him to pay a £40 victim surcharge and £85 costs.
Chairman of the bench Neil Woodward said: “We’ve taken a pretty dim view of this.
“You hit three cars, but what if they had been people? You would be going away for a few years.
“Instead, this is going to be an expensive night for you – but it could have been a lot worse, had there been compensation claims.”
John McGlone, prosecuting, told the court it was 5.05am on February 9 when one of the owners of the damaged cars called police.
He said: “He damaged a Volkswagwen Golf, a Ford Focus and a Ford Mondeo, which all had extensive damage.
“The officers followed debris to a BMW 320 which was abandoned in a back lane. There was extensive damage to the front, a wheel was hanging off and it was unlocked.
“They knocked on the door opposite and the defendant answered with facial injuries and he smelled of alcohol.”
During his police interview, Hindmarsh, who has no previous convictions, admitted he had been drinking and had caused the damage.
Ian Haq, defending, said: “He had been out in Sunderland, and though he had been drinking, wasn’t too much over the limit.
“He now lives in a part of Humberside that is quite out of the way so, as well as losing his job, he will have trouble getting around.”