Mum of tragic fall boy caught drink-driving

Burnley Magistrates' Court

Burnley Magistrates' Court

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The mother of a Burnley schoolboy who died after falling from a pipe into a canal has been caught drink driving - and told how depression after the tragedy made her turn to alcohol.

Nicola Jane Grimshaw (37) who lost her 11-year-old son Robbie Williamson in April 2014, had never passed a driving test and her provisional licence had expired when she was found behind the wheel just before midnight. She was alone in the Peugeot 206, which had L-plates on, when police pulled her up for not being insured, magistrates in Burnley were told.

The defendant, of Lubbock Street, Burnley, admitted driving with excess alcohol, no insurance and no licence, on Cavalry Way, Burnley, on February 25th. Grimshaw, who is on benefits, was fined £140, with £85 costs and a £30 victim surcharge and was banned for 12 months. Magistrates offered her a drink drivers' rehabilitation course.

Prosecutor Miss Parveen Akhtar told the hearing that ten minutes before midnight, police stopped Grimshaw as she was not insured.

Miss Akhtar said she was breath-tested, failed and was taken to the police station, where she blew 43 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35.

The defendant, who was not represented by a solicitor, said: "I'm just disgusted with myself. I'm really sorry. I have had a really bad time. I lost my 11-year-old son and I have been drinking due to depression."

The bench chairman told Grimshaw what she had done was a "very serious matter." He added: "You obviously knew you shouldn't be out on your own anyway, regardless of drink and you shouldn't drive when you have been drinking."

Grimshaw's son lost his life after he slipped and plunged from a pipeline crossing the Leeds and Liverpool Canal in Burnley. Robbie fell onto concrete below and into the water. A neighbour pulled him out of the canal and revived him, but the schoolboy sadly died at Royal Blackburn Hospital.