Road ban for driver who answered friend’s call for help


A MAN was stopped by police and found to be more than twice over the drink drive limit after getting behind the wheel to help a family friend.

Magistrates in South Tyneside were told Kenneth Murray was answering a plea from a friend who had no electricity or gas.

But he had drunk three pints of alcohol earlier in the day.

The 36-year-old was pulled over while travelling along York Avenue, Jarrow, by police who were concerned by his driving and he failed a roadside breath test.

Murray, of Charles Street, Boldon Colliery, was unable to give a breath test and instead gave a blood sample.

The reading was 185mlg of alchohol in 100ml of blood – above the legal limit of 80mlg.

Murray pleaded guilty to a charge of driving with excess alcohol.

Glenda Beck, prosecuting, said: “At 7.55pm on March 4, Murray was driving a Peugeot 206 vehicle along York Avenue when a police car was driving behind.

“Due to the manner of his driving, he was stopped.

“The officers asked if he had beenb drinking and he said ‘yeah’.”

Kate Lewis, mitigating, said: “An immediate guilty plea has been entered and he should be given full credit for that.

“He had no intention of driving that day. He had been out in the afternoon and had three pints.

“He then had something to eat and had a sleep.

“He then got a call from a family friend in a panic, saying they had no electricity or gas and asking if he could help.

“He felt fine and rather stupidly got in the car.

“He accepted straight away he had been drinking when stopped by the police.”

Murray was banned from driving for 20 months and ordered to pay a fine of £290.

He was also ordered to pay court costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £29.