South Shields dad-to-be avoids jail - and missing birth of first child

Lee Miller
Lee Miller

A dad-to-be has narrowly avoiding missing the birth of his first child after being handed a suspended jail sentence.

It comes after Lee Miller, 34, was caught driving an off-road motorbike with no lights, registration plate or helmet in South Shields in the early hours.

South Tyneside Magistrates' Court.

South Tyneside Magistrates' Court.

South Tyneside magistrates heard Miller, who is due to become a dad in six days’ time, was riding the illegal bike on the A194 Tyne Dock despite being disqualified from driving.

Prosecutor Glenda Beck said Miller was spotted at 2am on October 15, as he passed motor patrol officers.

She said the off-road bike had to lights or registration plates and that Miller was not wearing any protective headgear.

The court heard Miller diasspeared out of view, then turned into Hudson Street.

The circumstances he finds himself in are that his first child is due in six days’ time

Matthew Purvis, defending

When police caught up with him, he was pushing the bike along the pavement.

Mrs Beck said: “He showed signs of being drunk.

“Other officers arrived and the defendant tried to run away and was detained.

“He was cautioned and arrested and taken to Southwick police station, where he was verbally abusive to officers and staff and refused to answer questions by the custody sergeant or give a breath test.”

“He was placed in a cell and simply lay down on the mattress and closed his eyes.”

Miller, of Whitehead Street, South Shields, pleaded guilty to failing to provide a specimen of breath, driving whilst disqualified and having no insurance.

The court heard he has previous convictions for drink-driving and driving whilst disqualified.

Matthew Purvis, defending, said Miller had believed his disqualification had finished.

Mr Purvis said: “The circumstances he finds himself in are that his first child is due in six days’ time.

“As a result of his past social services are not giving him or his partner any rest at the moment.

“He has had to do significant work to satisfy social services and the local authority that it is a suitable house for this newborn child to come into.”

Miller was sentenced to 16 weeks’ imprisonment, suspended for 18 months.

He was told to complete 30 days’ specified activity and pay a £115 surcharge.

He was banned from driving for another three years.