Suspended jail for third drink driving offence

Crime story
Crime story
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A motorist who had an open can of lager in his car when he was stopped by police had been convicted of drink driving twice before.

Michael Boland, of Haydock, admitted a third drink driving offence after he was being stopped by police in Wigan shortly before midnight on March 21.

Wigan Magistrates’ Court heard how officers also found a small bag of cocaine on the passenger seat of the 30-year-old’s car.

Katie Beattie, prosecuting, told how plain clothes officers spotted Boland driving erratically and at speed along Lily Lane, Bamfurlong, towards Ashton. They watched as the vehicle swerved across the road before the driver pulled up outside a takeaway.

Spotting an open can of lager in the car, the officers asked Boland if he had been drinking.

He admitted to having downed “a couple of pints” before failing a roadside breath test.

Boland, who was found to be nearly double the legal drink drive limit, also pointed the officers in the direction of the bag of cocaine but insisted it was for his own personal use.

The defendant, who was unrepresented, told Magistrates of his “deep remorse” - despite previous drink driving convictions in 2003 and 2009.

He said: “I don’t seek to justify my actions but it wasn’t a deliberate drink driving offence. I had slept for four or five hours before getting in the car and didn’t know I was still over the limit.

“The can of lager in the car wasn’t mine - it was my brother’s from the day before.”

Magistrates handed Boland, of Elizabeth Road, a four-month jail sentence but suspended it for 12 months.

They also banned him from driving for 44 months and , ordered him to complete 80 hours unpaid work and pay a £250 fine, £100 towards prosecution costs and an £80 victim surcharge.