Suspended jail for drink-drive while banned

Court News
Court News

A man already banned for drink-driving took to the wheel in the early hours of the morning when he found himself locked out of his wife’s house.

John Geere (43), of Aveland Close, Bourne, had 81 microgrammes of alcohol in breath – more than double the legal limit – when police pulled him up in Spalding on April 5.

If you break the requirements of the order or you commit another offence while on the order, you can expect to serve the prison sentence, which would appear to be reasonable, would it not?

Presiding magistrate Steve Burgess

Boston magistrates heard Geere had intended to stay the night with his wife, from whom he was separated, but the house keys hadn’t been left outside and, instead, he found some car keys and set off to drive a short distance to a friend’s house.

Solicitor Beris Brickles, mitigating, said Geere’s wife was in bed and, as it was a terraced house, he was concerned the level of noise he would have to make to wake her would also disturb the neighbours.

Mr Brickles said: “I think it was just a question of poor thinking skills on that evening.

“He does bitterly regret what he did. In consultation with me today, he expressed that remorse very truthfully and very honestly.”

Presiding magistrate Steve Burgess told Geere his offences had passed the custody threshold.

Geere was sentenced to 12 weeks’ custody, suspended for 12 months, for driving with excess alcohol, and ordered to do 150 hours’ unpaid work.

He received an identical sentence, to run concurrently, for driving while disqualified.

Geere received no separate penalty for driving without insurance.

He pleaded guilty to all three offences.

Because of Geere’s previous drink-drive conviction last October, he was banned from driving for three years, although magistrates will allow him to cut that by 36 weeks if he completes a 
rehabilitation course.

He must also pay £85 
prosecution costs and an £80 victim surcharge.

Mr Burgess told Geere: “If you break the requirements of the order or you commit another offence while on the order, you can expect to serve the prison sentence, which would appear to be reasonable, would it not?”

Geere replied: “Yes, sir.”

Marie Stace, prosecuting, said police saw Geere in a Ford Focus at 1.50am on April 5, when he was on Penny-
gate and driving towards Park Road.

Police followed Geere, who was seen making “exaggerated manoeuvres” to pass vehicles and swerving in the road before suddenly turning right into Chaucer’s Way without indicating.

Mr Brickles said Gere had been out drinking that night with a friend and had no intention of driving. When he arrived by taxi at his wife’s home, his daughter had taken both the house keys – instead of leaving one under the mat.

Her then boyfriend had left car keys in the porchway and Geere took the car to go “literally a mile down the road” to his friend’s house.