Drunk driver escapes prison despite giving highest breath test results seen by magistrates (From Darlington and Stockton Times)
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Drunk driver escapes prison despite giving highest breath test results seen by magistrates
A DRUNK driver narrowly escaped prison despite giving the highest breath test results seen by magistrates.
Darlington woman Jayne Harrison, 43, was almost six times the legal limit when she drove her car into a ditch on Coatham Lane in August.
A witness found her repeatedly trying to reverse out of the ditch and went to her aid, Darlington Magistrates Court heard today (Thursday September 19).
Alan Davison, prosecuting, said: “The witness went to the vehicle, opened the door and smelled alcohol. Jayne Harrison was the only occupant.
“When she tried to get out of the vehicle, she fell over.”
Police were called and a breath test revealed Harrison had 190 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath – the legal limit being 35.
Handing down a 12-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months, chair of the bench David Williams said: “A reading of 190 is exceptionally high and not one we have experienced before.
“Because of that, we feel it has passed the custody threshold but because of your personal circumstances, we are prepared to suspend the sentence.”
He also banned Harrison from driving for three years and ordered her to pay costs of £160.
Leanne Galbraith, mitigating, said Harrison – a confessed alcoholic - had not intended to drive after spending an afternoon drinking gin with friends on Thursday August 8 and had only got behind the wheel to move her vehicle to allow a horse-rider to pass.
She said her client was "truly sorry" for her actions.
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