Tuesday, 01 December 2015

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Cumbrian charity worker was four times drink-drive limit

A charity worker who had a few glasses of wine while relaxing in the garden has narrowly avoided jail after she was found to be almost four times the drink-drive limit.

Jayne Cartledge, 45, was given a three-month prison sentence, suspended for a year, after pleading guilty to drink-driving.

Her lowest recorded reading was 127mcg of alcohol in 100ml of breath – the legal limit is 35mcg of alcohol in 100ml of breath.

Cartledge, of Thacka Lane, Penrith, was distraught when she admitted the charge before magistrates in Carlisle yesterday.

Prosecutor Pam Ward said that at 6pm on Saturday, March 3 Cartledge had been driving along Brunswick Street in Penrith when she hit a parked car, causing her car to roll twice down the road.

Both cars were damaged but Cartledge was unharmed.

Police arrived at the crash and, after smelling alcohol, breathalysed her and found her to be over the drink-drive limit.

David Matthews, defending, said Cartledge had not been driving erratically – a witness said she drove sensibly and within the speed limit – and she appeared sober when talking to police.

He said that Cartledge had been relaxing at home with her son that day, enjoying the weather by gardening and having a few glasses of wine.

Her partner of 18 years had been due to drop their dog off “up the road” that evening but the couple argued after he arrived home and so Cartledge decided to take the dog.

Mr Matthews told magistrates that his client was not just of good character but of “positive good character”.

He added: “It’s nice for me to deal with somebody who is not just somebody of no previous convictions, but to deal with someone who puts a lot of herself into the local community.

“She is a person who has contributed a great deal to local schools, a person who works two-and-a-half days a week as a seamstress and the other two days works in the Salvation Army shop.”

Magistrates took into account her early guilty plea and “exemplary character” in sentencing.

Cartledge was also ordered to complete 125 hours of unpaid work, given a 12-month supervision order with £85 costs.

She was disqualified from driving for two-and-a-half years but given the option of completing a drink-drive rehabilitation course which would reduce this by 30 weeks.

Her appearance in court prompted a warning about the perils of driving after enjoying a drink in the sun.

Mr Matthews said: “It is an abject lesson for anybody consuming alcohol on a social basis on a nice summer’s day that should they ever dream of getting behind a wheel to drive a car they stand a very high chance of a collision or even jail.”


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