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Thread: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

  1. #121
    price1367 is offline TTC Group Associate Director
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    You had a good result. This seems to be a continuing theme that I have noticed recently where people are in a parked car where it is clear that they must have driven there but the police do not charge drink driving, or even interview to establish the driving then charge drink driving.
    this leaves it open for the person to get 10 points or a ban of below the minimum of 12 months.
    You are right that the charge could have been amended at court, but CPS must have been satisfied that it was the correct charge. Just shows what a lottery it can be at court.
    if you had been charged with drink driving you would have had a 17-23 month ban, so 6 months is an exceptional result.
    i have seen similar reports in the press and wondered if there was any funny handshakes going on........ You don't have to say if you are!
    Hopefully a lesson learnt without too much pain in return.
    i am gathering anecdotal evidence on the inconsistency of how drink driving is dealt with. Could you let me know which town / city this was in, either on here or as a PM? (No name needed)
    Last edited by price1367; 02-22-2016 at 10:08 PM.


  2. #122
    babypanda is offline Member
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    Quote Originally Posted by price1367 View Post
    You had a good result. This seems to be a continuing theme that I have noticed recently where people are in a parked car where it is clear that they must have driven there but the police do not charge drink driving, or even interview to establish the driving then charge drink driving.
    this leaves it open for the person to get 10 points or a ban of below the minimum of 12 months.
    You are right that the charge could have been amended at court, but CPS must have been satisfied that it was the correct charge. Just shows what a lottery it can be at court.
    if you had been charged with drink driving you would have had a 17-23 month ban, so 6 months is an exceptional result.
    i have seen similar reports in the press and wondered if there was any funny handshakes going on........ You don't have to say if you are!
    Hopefully a lesson learnt without too much pain in return.
    i am gathering anecdotal evidence on the inconsistency of how drink driving is dealt with. Could you let me know which town / city this was in, either on here or as a PM? (No name needed)
    They didn't charge me with drink driving because no one actually saw me driving. I was stopped by police initially because my car was parked on a zebra crossing.

  3. #123
    price1367 is offline TTC Group Associate Director
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    That is where you were lucky. You say you admitted ou had dropped a friend off and were then driving home. Your own admission about driving can be enough to charge you with Drink driving.

  4. #124
    ZZTopWereHere is offline Member
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    Brief Description of Offence:
    Had a couple of pints in the afternoon with my wife at a cafeteria/restaurant in a National Trust park and another couple in the evening along the road to our dinner destination. Our dinner at another pub was booked quite late, and that's why we had an unusual extra stop on our way. We've then had dinner with a couple of glasses of wine each in a pub about 10 mins from home. I was quite confident as I was feeling OK and we were close to home. It was Saturday night and a police car was waiting on the roadside just outside the pub car park. I was driving cautiously but as soon as I drove past the police car I could see the car reversing and following me very closely. That led me to drive quite slowly and after my first turn the police car switched on the lightbar so I stopped and got out of the car.

    Blood Alcohol Level and Reading Type:
    The roadside test was just a pass/fail one and I failed. At the police station, quite close to where I was arrested, the readings were 47 and 48, with the lower taken as the final one.

    Mitigating Factors:
    Careful driving. No previous convictions and clean licence. Good reference from my wife. Pleaded guilty since the very beginning and cooperated with the police. Well received plea of mitigation.

    Aggravating Factors:
    None. From what I've read here it appears that the police often mention some excuse to carry out a breath test, and in my case the constable initially mentioned that I was driving very slowly. Then the CPS report stated that they could "smell alcohol" but probably it's just because "driving slowly" sounded too innocent. Given the amount I drunk and the full dinner I had, I can hardly believe that anyone could smell alcohol. I guess that the police were just waiting, and rightly so, to breathalyse the next driver who would have left the pub car park.

    Legal Representation at Court?:
    The duty solicitor. Initially I meant to consult with her and get feedback about my plea, but I was assuming I would have read my plea to the court. In the end the duty solicitor did all the talking using a summary of what we discussed before the hearing, while my written plea was handed to the judges who seemed to appreciate it.

    Sentence:
    12 months ban that will be reduced to 9 if I'll complete the rehabilitation course. £400 fine + £85 costs + £40 victims surcharge = £525, payable in two installments (the number of installments was pretty much up to me but I wanted to get over with the payment fairly quickly).

    Offered the Drink Driving Rehabilitation Course?:
    Yes, even before the hearing to some extent. The duty solicitor asked me where I would have liked to attend the course before the hearing, and also in the court room there was plenty of leaflets about rehab courses. Probably it's a court generally favourable to such courses. I was able to pick a course which is halfway along my route to get back home from the office, so about 7 mins walking from home and/or from the office. I will certainly attend it.

    Sentence Comments:
    I don't think I could expect anything better than what I got. The judges mentioned that a strict interpretation of the guidelines for my reading would have led to a 14 months disqualification but they wanted to stick to the minimum 12 in my case, offering also the option of the course for a further reduction. I was expecting a tougher fine but probably they took into account the fact that my wife doesn't work and, also, they mentioned that while they can't reduce the ban below the minimum, they can apply extra leniency to the fine. They seemed to be surprised by all the collateral damage (especially about the 5 years to wait before entering Canada) caused by a DD conviction and probably they took into account that for me such damage was worse than the ban and fine alone. I completely deserved this lesson and I'm looking forward to the rehabilitation course to go way beyond my self indulgence when it came to drinking before driving. Feeling OK in my case was not enough to respect the law and from now on I'll just stick to a zero-alcohol rule before driving. Still, I'm looking forward to the course in order to know when to drive the day after a few more drinks than usual, or how much I can drink before a morning when I'll have to drive. I'm only a bit annoyed by the excuses to carry out a breath test. It's perfectly fine to breathalyse people for the sake of it, I'm not sure why there should always be some additional excuse, often quite petty, to justify a perfectly reasonable check.
    Additional details at http://www.forum.drinkdriving.org/ha...ving/79800.htm.
    Last edited by ZZTopWereHere; 04-19-2016 at 10:48 PM.

  5. #125
    ZZTopWereHere is offline Member
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    Quote Originally Posted by ZZTopWereHere View Post
    I'm only a bit annoyed by the excuses to carry out a breath test. It's perfectly fine to breathalyse people for the sake of it, I'm not sure why there should always be some additional excuse, often quite petty, to justify a perfectly reasonable check.
    After writing this I have reviewed the relevant documentation and indeed both on this website (http://www.drinkdriving.org/police_b...reliminary.php) both at http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1988/52/section/6 it is mentioned that a roadside test can only be carried out if the constable "reasonably suspects" that someone is driving after drinking too much, unless an accident occurs in which case a test is allowed regardless of any reasonable suspicion. In other websites I've read of debates around giving more power to the police to carry out purely random tests.

    I didn't know this detail, also because I've been living in the UK for only less than 2 years now, and it's probably related to the British tradition wrt respecting individual freedom. However, while the wording is nice, I bet no one would argue with a constable regarding whether his/her suspicion is reasonable or not as that would most likely result in being prosecuted for refusing to provide a specimen.

    I believe that sheer random tests would be more helpful also to reduce the amount of people that believe they might never be caught by behaving in ways that wouldn't lead to any reasonable suspicion. Moreover, the constables would not need to write down questionable statements regarding the circumstances leading to a test.

    In my case I think that the suspicion first occurred when I left the pub car park, as that's when the police car started following me, but then I was asked why I was driving slowly and then in the prosecution documents there was written that the constable could smell alcohol which, I believe, is quite unlikely (and I wasn't told this anyway while I was being questioned after getting stopped).

    I'm glad I've learned this lesson in relatively favourable circumstances as I was close to home and no accident happened, but the reference to alcohol smell added a further, and I believe unfair, source of shame which should be entirely unnecessary if the laws did not include all the wording about reasonable suspicions.

    Best regards,
    Z

  6. #126
    Mclanelli is offline Established Member
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    Quote Originally Posted by ZZTopWereHere View Post
    After writing this I have reviewed the relevant documentation and indeed both on this website (http://www.drinkdriving.org/police_b...reliminary.php) both at http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1988/52/section/6 it is mentioned that a roadside test can only be carried out if the constable "reasonably suspects" that someone is driving after drinking too much, unless an accident occurs in which case a test is allowed regardless of any reasonable suspicion. In other websites I've read of debates around giving more power to the police to carry out purely random tests.

    I didn't know this detail, also because I've been living in the UK for only less than 2 years now, and it's probably related to the British tradition wrt respecting individual freedom. However, while the wording is nice, I bet no one would argue with a constable regarding whether his/her suspicion is reasonable or not as that would most likely result in being prosecuted for refusing to provide a specimen.

    I believe that sheer random tests would be more helpful also to reduce the amount of people that believe they might never be caught by behaving in ways that wouldn't lead to any reasonable suspicion. Moreover, the constables would not need to write down questionable statements regarding the circumstances leading to a test.

    In my case I think that the suspicion first occurred when I left the pub car park, as that's when the police car started following me, but then I was asked why I was driving slowly and then in the prosecution documents there was written that the constable could smell alcohol which, I believe, is quite unlikely (and I wasn't told this anyway while I was being questioned after getting stopped).

    I'm glad I've learned this lesson in relatively favourable circumstances as I was close to home and no accident happened, but the reference to alcohol smell added a further, and I believe unfair, source of shame which should be entirely unnecessary if the laws did not include all the wording about reasonable suspicions.

    Best regards,
    Z


    If the police have to "reasonably suspect" then how do they justify random early AM roadside breath tests where they pull anyone over and demand a sample?

    How does this apply? I would love to know; because it strikes me that the police can request a breath test whenever they like, without any reasonable suspicion. Unless of course they actually believe that people are going to be over the limit on a Wednesday morning at 7am.

    M

  7. #127
    miserable is offline Member
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    [Brief Description of Offence:
    Had been out with a friend and when I came home she called to ask if I would like to join her at hers for a drink. Stupidly got in car and drove. Crashed into a telegraph pole and wrote my car off.

    Blood Alcohol Level and Reading Type:
    Blew 92

    Mitigating Factors:
    .
    No previous convictions and held a clean licence. Good references and complied at all times.
    Aggravating Factors:
    Crashed car. High reading.

    Legal Representation at Court?:
    Consulted with the duty solicitor on the morning but he di not attend court so I represented myself.

    Sentence:
    24 month bad - reduced to 18 with course. £180 fine plus court costs.

    Offered the Drink Driving Rehabilitation Course?:
    Yes, even before the hearing to some extent. The duty solicitor asked me where I would have liked to attend the course before the hearing, and also in the court room there was plenty of leaflets about rehab courses. Probably it's a court generally favourable to such courses. I was able to pick a course which is halfway along my route to get back home from the office, so about 7 mins walking from home and/or from the office. I will certainly attend it.

    Sentence Comments:
    I could have done worse I think. The magistrates mentioned they gave me a lower fine and no community order.

  8. #128
    gstanley is offline Member
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    Brief Description of Offence:
    Out on a saturday night in my local town, wasn't heavily on the drink but had had a few pints and vodka mixers over the course of the night. Was with my mate and for some reason we get in his car and drive off. He had drunk a lot more than me so i drove. I got stopped within a minute. (moral; just get a flaming taxi!)

    Blood Alcohol Level and Reading Type:
    69 roadside, 66 station (breath)

    Mitigating Factors:
    Usual; clean driving record for 5 years, no previous drink driving / criminal convictions, full co-operation with the police, short distance driven etc. No reason for being pulled over.

    Aggravating Factors:
    Wasn't my car; thought i was insured third party to drive other vehicles but turns out i wasn't.

    Legal Representation at Court?:
    With duty solicitor yes. She was excellent! Wouldn't even bother getting a solicitor unless you're pleading not guilty for a specific reason.

    Sentence:
    Length of disqualification - 17 months reduced by 17 weeks upon course completion, so just over a year.
    Fine and costs amount - £120 fine, £85 costs & £20 victim surcharge. £225 all in.
    DR10 & IN10 endorsements to be put on my license. (2 worst possible ones... brilliant)

    Offered the Drink Driving Rehabilitation Course?:
    Yes & will be taking it - 17 weeks off ban - no brainer

    Sentence Comments:
    With a fair amount of mitigating factors, the magistrates could see it was just a big stupid mistake, not going to happen again, so they did give me the minimum sentence for what i blew. Solicitor plea'd that i get the minimum 12 month ban but they obviously didn't want to go lower than the guidelines for my reading which is fair enough i suppose. Bit annoying as i have seen recently someone getting just a 12 month ban for the exact same reading as me but hey. However getting the endorsement on my license for having no insurance too is going to make my car insurance prices ridiculous for a few years now. Being a full time student made my fine the lowest it could be. I am a massive petrolhead and cars are my life so its a huge blow to be banned. lesson well and truly learnt.
    Last edited by Forum Moderator; 06-03-2016 at 12:34 PM.

  9. #129
    Psychobabble is offline Member
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    Brief Description of Offence:
    Had a couple of drinks as much as I can recall anyway, but from my breath must have had more than I thought. Drove home and got pulled by an off duty who called for assistance.

    Blood Alcohol Level Breath 94ug

    Mitigating Factors:
    long clean driving record, no previous drink driving / criminal convictions, co-operation with the police, relied on by family as partner works away.

    Aggravating Factors: none, but cps did note a scent conviction for a very minor failure to stop and report.

    Legal Representation at Court?:
    Yes

    Sentence:
    24 month ban. Driving course which will reduce to 18 months. Total fine of 640. No community service - pleaded for a higher fine.

    Offered the Drink Driving Rehabilitation Course?:
    Yes got it booked already

    Sentence Comments:
    Any comments on the sentence given? What I expected really, was advised by solicitor that rarely go outside of guidelines and that we should pin hopes on getting rid of the community service aspect.

    Absolute shame and disgust at myself. Relief that it wasn't worse I. E no accident etc

  10. #130
    stubear is offline Member
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    Default Re: DRINK DRIVING SENTENCES

    Convicted Driver Insurance Quotes
    Brief Description of Offence:


    Drinking wine at home alone, foolishly and recklessly decided to drive for a takeaway after consuming large amount of wine.

    Blood Alcohol Level and Reading Type:


    Failed roadside test. Blew 96mcg at police station.

    Mitigating Factors:


    1 minor previous fine 2003, no other previous.
    Clean driving licence.
    Responsible job.
    Handed in letter of apology at first hearing. 20th Oct.
    Cooperated fully with police
    Plead guilty at first opportunity.


    Aggravating Factors:


    On patrol police car saw my car swerving and pulled me over. Smelt alcohol on breath failed roadside test.

    Legal Representation at Court?:


    Duty solicitor. I think the sheriff would have asked for duty representation anyway as she rarely spoke directly to the accused.


    Sentence:


    24 month driving ban
    1 year community pay back order (this is not community service)
    Have to meet with social work often, like a supervision order.


    Offered the Drink Driving Rehabilitation Course?:


    Unfortunately I wasn’t, and I really wanted to be, as I would have taken it at the earliest opportunity.
    I did ask for it in my original letter of apology; however there was no mention of it when the sheriff sentenced me. She just said that it was 24 reduced from 36 for the early plea.
    I was gutted that it wasn’t mentioned, but was afraid to butt in and ask for it as she seemed quite angry, I should probs have asked the solicitor but It all goes past so quickly.
    Being able to reduce to 18 months would have given me something to aim for.

    Sentence Comments:


    24 month ban and one year’s supervision (regular social work contact) is perhaps a bit harsh, well harsher than what I had in my mind pre court.
    I was hoping to be referred onto DD course, but It wasn’t mentioned. Kind of annoyed with myself at not bringing it up as they maybe just weren’t aware of it.
    But alas it is what it is, and you have to respect the decision as I did wrong.

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