‘Months to live’ drink driver jailed

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A DRINK driver who may have only months to live has been jailed for more than a year.

Gary McKitten, of Marigold Crescent, Fencehouses, took to the road while four times over the limit after arguing with his father, Durham Crown Court heard.

“He left the house in Bournmoor in the early evening and headed towards his ex-wife’s house in Stanley,” said Sam Faulks, prosecuting.

“Just west of Chester-le-Street, he came up behind a new driver in a Corsa and rammed the Corsa as it was being driven along.

“The Corsa driver stopped and there was contact again.

“McKitten was flashing his lights, both cars moved off and the Corsa driver managed to lose his pursuer.

“The Corsa driver, who was 18 and had only just passed his test, reported the incident to police at Stanley.”

The court heard McKitten was arrested while trying to break into his ex-wife’s home with an iron bar.

McKitten, 47, admitted dangerous driving, driving with excess alcohol, and driving while disqualified, all on May 31 last year.

He has six previous convictions for drink driving, one previous conviction for dangerous driving, and is already disqualified for six years.

Alex Burns, defending, said: “His doctors say if he starts drinking again, he could be dead within months. Even if he refrains from drinking, Mr McKitten does not have a long life expectancy.

“He has been off the drink while on remand in prison, and hopes to remain sober when he is released.”

The Recorder, Mr Jonathan Bennett, jailed McKitten for 19 months.

“Sometimes, when a defendant has a reduced life expectancy, the court is able to take a more merciful course than might otherwise be appropriate,” said the recorder.

“But this offence, and your dreadful driving record, indicates there is a high risk you will drink again and pose a significant danger to other road users.”

McKitten was banned from driving for four years, and he must take an extended test if he wishes to drive again.