Drink driver arrested after spotting dad talking to police

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A DRINK driver found himself under arrest after he stopped his car to talk to the police.

Leon Fitzpatrick, who has never passed a driving test, was driving to the shop the morning after a heavy night of partying, Sunderland magistrates heard.

He could have got away scot-free as police officers took no notice of him as he drove a Citroen Saxo in Brunswick Road, Town End Farm, on September 28.

But the 21-year-old, of nearby Bayswater Square, spotted police talking to his father, whose car had been stopped by officers, and decided to find out why.

Prosecutor Paul Anderson said officers could smell alcohol on Fitzpatrick’s breath when he approached them, and when they later saw him drive past, they stopped his car.

A breath test confirmed that he had 56 microgrammes of alcohol in 100ml of breath, the legal limit being 35 microgrammes.

Fitzpatrick, who has just landed a job fitting parts for Nissan, was arrested and later admitted drink driving, driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence and having no insurance.

Anna Haq, mitigating, said: “It seemed rather unfortunate what happened that particular day as police didn’t stop Mr Fitzpatrick. He was driving along and police allowed him to go by.

“Unfortunately, police had stopped someone else on this particular road and he realised that person was his father. He pulled over and asked to speak to police as he wanted to know what was happening. They could smell alcohol.

“He would never have been arrested if he hadn’t got out of that vehicle, there was no evidence of bad driving.”

Fitzpatrick was banned from driving for 14 months. He was also fined £110 and told to pay a £20 victim surcharge and £85 costs.