Drink-driver (79) was so unruly that caged van needed

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DRIVER Ernest Wedgbury (79) was so unruly while being taken for a breath test that police had to stop their car and call for a caged van.

Spalding Magistrates’ Court heard that the pensioner was swearing and saying he was getting out and going home while they were doing 60mph on the A17.

Prosecuting at Spalding Magistrates’ Court last Thursday, Rebecca Ritsonsaid Wedgbury was telling officers to “get these ******* handcuffs off me” and saying he was 80 years old.

They called for a caged van to take him the rest of the way.

The pensioner was over the drink-drive limit when he crashed into another car in Long Sutton, stopped for 30 seconds, and then drove off to the chip shop.

But passers-by flagged down a police car and he was breath tested, arrested and taken to Spalding.

Wedgbury (79), of Main Street, Gedney Dyke, pleaded guilty to driving with 146 milligrammes of alcohol in blood – the legal limit is 80mgs – on July 14.

He was banned from driving for 18 months, fined £400 and ordered to pay £85 with a £15 victim surcharge.

Magistrates offered him a rehabilitation course and if he completes that he can cut four months off the ban.

Solicitor David Lee, mitigating, handed in a letter on Wedgbury’s behalf.

He described Wedgbury as being of impeccable good character and said the drink drive offence was completely out of character.

Mr Lee said Wedgbury had a drink at lunchtime on the day of the offence but then had a second after receiving bad news about a friend being very ill.

He felt safe to drive.

Mr Lee said Wedgbury’s wife is ill and relies on her husband for transport to the shops and doctors.

Presiding magistrate Jim Price said the court had taken all the circumstances into account, including information in the letter, and the ban may mean he will need to ask some of the people he has helped in the past to “help you now in your hour of need”.