Pregnant mum faces jail after being reported for looking after toddler while drunk for THIRD time

OUTSIDE COURT: Emma Kirsopp
OUTSIDE COURT: Emma Kirsopp

A MUM who was so drunk she was in an ‘unfit state’ to look after her two-year-old son has been told she could face jail.

Police were called to Emma Kirsopp’s home in Cornwallis Square, South Shields, after concerns were raised for the welfare of the tot by a neighbour who had seen her appearing intoxicated.

Emma Kirsopp

Emma Kirsopp

It is her third similar conviction in the space of less than 18 months.

The 39-year-old admitted a charge of child neglect when she appeared before South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

In August 2013 she was handed a four-month jail term – suspended for 18 months – at Wirral Magistrates’ Court for being drunk in charge of a child, as well as a further offence of driving with excess alcohol.

Then, in August last year, she admitted the same offence at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court after being spotted swigging from a bottle of vodka and being barely able to stand while pushing her son in a buggy on July 9.

When officers arrived, she told them she was an alcoholic and was arrested and her child was initially placed under police protection before being returned to her care.

Magistrates spared her jail on that occasion, instead extending the existing suspended sentence order by six months and handing her a 12-month community order with supervision.

She was told by magistrates’ court chair Yvonne Cracknell: “This is your final chance.

“Take it with both hands.”

But just weeks after her reprieve, she was arrested for being in an intoxicated state while caring for her child.

District Judge Helen Cousins told Kirsopp that her ‘starting point’ for sentencing would be 12 weeks in custody.

But she asked for a probation report to be prepared on the mum – who is currently three months pregnant – before a verdict is delivered. Neil Fodor, prosecuting, said: “Kirsopp was at home with her young child on August 31.

“She was not (due to drink) in a fit state to take care of that child.

“What will be of note is her record.

“She has two previous matters which are almost identical.”

Geoffrey Forrester, defending, said that Kirsopp is three months pregnant.

No further mitigation was offered on Kirsopp’s behalf as Judge Cousins decided to adjourn sentencing for the probation report to be compiled.

She said that Kirsopp’s pregnancy would have no impact on the sentencing decision.

Judge Cousins told Kirsopp: “The starting point for this case would be 12 weeks in custody.

“There are two identical previous matters.

“But I feel I will need to hear from the probation service.

“I need to know more about you before I sentence you in this matter.”

The case was adjourned until February 5 for a probation report to be completed.

Kirsopp was granted unconditional bail until that date.

Twitter@shieldsgazchris