‘Lost’ motorist was over the limit

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A MAN who failed a roadside alcohol breath test after getting behind the wheel following a row with his girlfriend has been banned from driving.

John Emery was stopped by police in Dame Flora Robson Avenue, South Shields, after they were concerned that he had got lost.

When they spoke to him, they smelt alcohol on his breath and he gave a positive roadside test.

The 28-year-old was arrested and taken to South Shields police station but couldn’t blow for long enough on the breath-test equipment.

He was charged with failing to provide a specimen for analysis, and he admitted the offence at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

Jonathan Moore, prosecuting, said; “At 1.45am on April 26, officers were on duty in Dame Flora Robson Avenue when they stopped a white van.

“They could smell intoxicating liquor on the driver’s breath.

“He was given a roadside breath test and taken to South Shields Police Station.

“He was given a number of chances to provide a specimen of breath and didn’t provide a medical reason.”

Paul Kennedy, defending, said: “The police didn’t stop him because they were suspicious about his driving. It was because he seemed to be lost and was driving around aimlessly.

“He had an argument with his partner and was driving to clear his head.

“He did try to provide a breath specimen but could’t blow on it for long enough.

“It wasn’t a deliberate failure or a deliberate refusal to give a breath specimen.”

He added: “He accepts he had had a drink, which is why the roadside breath test was positive.

“He shouldn’t have done it and he wishes he hadn’t. He has shown genuine remorse.”

Emery, of Broadmeadows, Fatfield, Washington, was banned from driving for 12 months.

He was also ordered to pay a fine of £250 as well as court costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £25.