A DRINK-DRIVER is facing prison after admitting responsibility for a crash in which a soldier was killed.

Christopher James Howson, from Billingham, will be sentenced at Teesside Crown Court in the New Year.

The 24-year-old appeared in court yesterday and pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving.

He also admitted driving with excess alcohol – after giving a reading of almost double the legal limit.

Howson was arrested after a crash involving his Ford Focus on Wolviston Road, Billingham, on April 15.

Soldier Gordon Quigley, 26, who was based at Catterick Garrison, in North Yorkshire, was killed.

Howson, of Bosworth Way, Billingham, was granted bail until his next court appearance on January 4.

His barrister, Peter Makepeace, told the court: “Custody is inevitable. He needs to make preparations for that.”

After the crash, Lance Corporal Quigley's family paid tribute to a man who “was loved by all who knew him”.

In a statement, his wife, parents and sister said he was a talented and keen sportsman and musician.

“Gordon was a loving father, husband and a very much loved son, brother, grandson and nephew,” they said.

Lance Corporal Quigley spent his life in the military, after a childhood in Germany with his military family.

He had a passion for motorbikes and guitars, and had been due to return to serve in Afghanistan in September.