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Thursday, 23 October 2014

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Visit to police led to drink drive ban for retired teacher

A retired teacher has been banned from driving after she was breathalysed when she went to the police station about stolen property.

Margaret Gill photo
Margaret Gill

Margaret Gill, of Faustin Hill, Wetheral, went to Durranhill police station to inquire about property stolen from her house during a fire in 2008, Carlisle magistrates’ court heard.

Prosecutor Andrew Travis said she spoke to an officer at the reception desk and her breath smelt of alcohol.

“She was asked if she had driven [to the station],” he said. Gill said she had come in her Nissan Micra, which was parked outside.

She was breathalysed and found to be over the limit. The court heard she blew a reading of 63mg in 100ml of breath but refused to give an ‘evidential’ reading on the police equipment. She was arrested and told must take a test but became “hysterical”, the court heard.

Defence lawyer Lauren Heesley said Gill was frightened about going into a cell as she was claustrophobic. “She honestly thought a solicitor should be present while she undertook a breathalyser test,” she said. She felt aggrieved that she could not get a duty solicitor at the time.

Judge Gerald Chalk was told Gill was a retired teacher and suffering from depression at the time.

The 67-year-old admitted failing to provide a specimen of breath for analysis on May 29.

Judge Chalk banned Gill from driving for 18 months and she was also fined £300. She was ordered to pay £150 court costs and a £30 victim surcharge.

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