Carer caught drink-driving

Burnley Magistrates' Court
Burnley Magistrates' Court

A carer caught over three times the excess alcohol limit told a probation officer she only drank “once every blue moon”.

Christine Bury had got behind the wheel after a night out with her husband when she had fled their home. The couple had had a row which turned violent, she had “ feared for her own safety” and set off to her daughter’s round the corner.

Burnley magistrates heard how the 50-year-old crashed into parked cars at around 4am, prompting residents to come out and call the police. She told officers: “I’m not going to lie to you.

It was me that was driving.” Her Peugeot 208 was extensively damaged.

The court heard police reported the defendant, her husband’s carer, was so drunk she had to be helped into the police van and “the way she was talking” also gave her away. She blew 106 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35.

The defendant, of Venice Avenue, Burnley, admitted driving with excess alcohol on the avenue on February 10. She was given a community order with 100 hours unpaid work and must pay £85 costs and an £85 victim surcharge. Bury was banned for two years.

Probation officer Mr Elliot Smith, who interviewed the defendant, said Bury had been out with her husband, had a lot to drink and when they came home there was an argument.

He slapped her and she retaliated by kicking him. The officer continued: “He went upstairs and she seized the car keys and took the spur of the moment decision to drive to her daughter’s.”

He added: "She says she only drinks once every blue moon and it does appear to be an isolated incident. She is very embarrassed. This is a very large lesson.”

Mr Daniel Frazer, defending, told the court Bury had “played down” what actually happened on that night. He continued :” She told me there was an incident which did turn physical. She feared for her own safety and fled the scene.”

District Judge Alexandra Simmonds told Bury she should have walked. She added: “You were clearly seriously impaired.”