A FAMILY are without transport after a father was caught driving his disabled son’s mobility vehicle while four times the legal drink-drive limit.
Ian Murray, who cares for his son, who has cerebral palsy, and his wife, who suffered a brain haemorrhage several years ago, was banned from driving for 29 months when he appeared before Sunderland magistrates and lost the car his family used to get around.
The 52-year-old had been doing the family shop on August 27, when he stopped off at The Honest Boy in Blackfell for a few drinks, the court was told.
But when he returned to the Peugeot 308 estate car, police had already been alerted by a concerned member of the public.
Murray, a former RAF engineer, embarked on the brief journey to his home in Thirlmoor, Blackfell, Washington, where he was pulled over by officers.
Murray, who also spent 10 years with the Royal Marines, rising to the rank of sergeant before becoming a full-time carer, left the car jutting out into the road, prosecutor Janice Bellamy said.
The father-of-four has was found to have 143 microgrammes of alcohol in 100ml of breath – the legal limit being 35 microgrammes.
Sandra Fife, mitigating, said: “It’s somewhat unfortunate.
“As a result of the caring commitments he has been drinking more than has perhaps dawned on him.
“He never once complained or blamed anything on any of his duties. He accepts it’s his own fault.
“His one and only concern is for his family, they are the ones who are going to suffer.”
Murray was also given a community order with 18 months’ supervision and was told to complete the drink impaired drivers’ programme.
He also has to pay £85 costs and a £60 victim surcharge.