A Peterborough college student whose car broke down while driving drunk, was reported to police by the person who offered him a lift after they spotted what they thought were two handguns in his back pockets.
James Clark, 19, of Colton Close, Baston appeared before Grantham magistrates on Monday and pleaded guilty to driving whilst unfit through drink.
Prosecutor Daniel Pietryka related how at around 5am on September 4 the defendant was driving home from Peterborough when his Citroen Saxo broke down on the A15 near Market Deeping.
Leaving his car at the side of the road with its hazards on, Clark grabbed a holdall from the vehicle and while walking back was seen by a driver and offered a lift.
This driver then noticed that Clark had what they thought were two guns in his back pockets, and although in a statement they said they did not feel threatened by the teen, who they described as ‘dozy and not really with it’, they did afterwards report him to the police.
Officers arrived and identified that these were BB guns. However after he failed a roadside breath test, Clark was taken to the police station.
Belinda Smith, defending, detailed that her client had only been driving since May 2014, and was a student at Peterborough Regional College who had never been in trouble with police before.
He works part-tme at a Baston pub and the offence occurred after he finished a shift at midnight. He then drove to a friend’s house in Peterborough where he intended to stay over, bringing a holdall of items with him.
These included a baseball bat because Clark plays the sport, and the BB guns which he said he had brought along to show his friend. While there he drank four or five bottles of flavoured lager, but then decided to drive home because he had work the next day.
While driving back he said the car ‘just cut out’, and did all he could to get it safely off the road.
Ms Smith added that Clark was extremely sorry for what he had done, and would not be troubling the courts again. She said any financial penalties would come on top of the £300 he paid to get his car back after it was seized, and that the loss of his licence would impact on him getting to work, college and to gigs as he is part of a band.
Magistrates disqualified Clark from driving for 12 months, with the chance to reduce this by 12 weeks if he completes a drink driver’s rehabilitation course. He must also pay a £120 fine, £85 prosecution costs, £20 victim surcharge and a £150 criminal court charge.